February 28, 2005

Add this to the list...

...of things never to eat before bedtime:

Turkey croquettes + mozzarella cheese + diet cream soda + meds.

The result? Well, here's a partial listing of the dreams I had afterwards, at least what I remember:

~Some lady with a store-bought cream sauce roasting whole ducks--feathers and all--in a big iron container. The dream showed me what the sauce container looked like; I think it was something with sour cream in it. I can't remember what it was called.

~Something about my dentist's appointment [I really do have one coming up] only, instead of my regular dentist, it was with some Chinese dentist named We Chu or Wen Chu. [Get it? Dentist? Teeth? Chu?]

~A pair of dwarfs--not D&D dwarfs, just regular little people--paying a visit to our company as preparation for possibly buying it. [D, if you're reading this, you KNOW where the dwarfs came from!]

~Something about being on a spaceship.

~Something about a set of swords associated with different deities, and I picked up the sword of Isis and became her avatar, and was able to carve through reality, peel parts of it away like fabric, and reveal another dimension behind it that was partially real and partially the imagination of the fellow I was talking to in the dream. I advised him to shoot somebody that had recently died in order to make sure they stayed dead, to shoot them, in fact, every several hours or so until burial. Just to be sure, you see.

~Being in the place where I used to have my physical therapy and having my old physical therapist [who looked totally different] tell me to stop eating tomato products because it gives you ulcers, and the crack in your stomach from that can lead to heart attacks. He admonished me to stay away from tomato juice, which I don't even drink.

So, yeah. No cheesey turkey croquettes, and ix-nay on the oda-say, and be careful with the medications.

What a tiring night. I feel like going back to bed. Where's my coffee?

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Posted by Frida Peeple at 01:43 AM | Comments (0)

February 24, 2005

memefest

Boy, that's a lot of e's.

I'm gonna try and catch up on some of the memes I've missed, so this may get a smidge long.

Witches first. [Natch.]

How do you feel about the term "fluffy pagan?" What is your definition?
How do I feel about it? It's not quite as colourful or evocative as "lazy dipshit pagan who doesn't read," but it works. It's a slur, that's for sure. Hm...I think I sorta defined it already.

What do you feel are some of the "wrong" reasons that people tend to learn towards the pagan faith? (sex, drugs etc)
Yes, I'm sure some of them gravitate towards certain paths because of ritual nudity or entheogen use. Among other dumb and annoying [but entirely human] reasons for joining paganism include looking cool, wanting to scare your parents or schoolmates, and the belief that you really will gain some secret power. Some of the mildly annoying but rather more understandable reasons include rebellion against Christianity and an aversion to male authority figures. This is where you get some of the fundapagans who insist on using "Goddess" all the time and will not even deign to say "gods" and allow "god" to be a gender-neutral term and rid it of its scary male connotations. I say "Goddess" and "Lady" too, but I also say a lot of "god" and "gods." It does take a while to deprogram yourself after you've been fed images of a wrathful male deity and a simpering, passive female kinda-sorta-not-really deity. It's natural to feel an aversion to male deities for a while, and I think any deity that paid attention to the situation on this planet would understand why.

What annoys you the most about some of today's self-defined pagans?
That they don't read. They don't understand that this is not like Christianity or Hare Krishna or something where you can just read one or two books, and maybe some pamphlets and a couple websites, and just know everything you need to know. Paganism is so diverse that you really have to do a lot of your own research and decide for yourself what information is worth listening to. You really can't just read Ravenwolf and think "Wicca=witchcraft=paganism" and think that you've got it, because that's a horrific distortion. There is no canon or bible for paganism, and there really isn't a single place where it's all sensibly compiled by well-researched and objective authors and editors. What you need to know is scattered throughout history books, anthropology books, books on classical and modern paganism, and books on more esoteric things like herbalism and folk magic symbology. What complicates it further is nimrods who write books based on faulty or disproven research [everybody say "Margaret Murray"] and then get their bullshit quoted and repeated until people really DO think that there were 6 million witches killed or whatever. I've said it before and I'll say it again. Paganism is not for people with poor research skills. If you'd rather somebody else did all the heavy reading and thinking for you, you're on the wrong path. Of course, you could be a Thelemite or something, and as long as you do whatever you want and don't worry too much about Crowley's gobbledegook in The Book of the Law, you're fine. Unless you run into another Thelemite that reads a lot more than you. Then you're hosed.

I'd say more, but I'd just be repeating myself. The unfortunate thing about reading a lot is that you often end up being pedantic. Or maybe pedantic people just read more because they're pedantic. I don't know.

Enough sensible stuff. Time to get weird.

1. What would be a good outfit for a fish to wear?
Well, fishnet stockings are out. Depending on the fish, I'd say either lemon pepper or beer batter.

2. If you lined up all the world's dentists end to end, what would happen? Also what would be your motivation for lining them up?
What would happen, and this is just my guess, is that people would be sitting in dental chairs wondering where the hell their dentists are. As for my motivation...well, I could do it just to see what would happen. Or I could do it as preparation to personally give each and every one of them a novocaine shot.

3. What regulations does the government have with regard to inch worms? How does it enforce these regulations?
Shockingly, there are no regulations regarding inch worms. Upon finding this out, I called the congressman who was responsible for the study concerning the contribution of cow flatus to ozone depletion, and told him to light a fire under it.

4. Ok, there are no real rhymes for orange, but come up with a sentence ending in orange followed by a sentence that almost rhymes or that sounds good there. Don't be stingy - give a couple more examples.
When I was young, I had an orange.
I tied it with string, and called it George. [I confess, I did nothing of the kind.]

um...

If you get an acid stomach from eating an orange...
um...
an apropriate antidote would be slippery elm porridge. [It would, too, actually.]

5. What is the purpose of fuzzy dice? How else might they come in handy?
Fuzzy dice are hung on the rearview mirror as a way of demonstrating that you have balls without getting a citation for leaving your actual balls hang out. They're fuzzy, they come in a pair, one usually hangs a little lower, and they're suspended from part of your car, which is often classified as a phallic symbol [especially when you're 50 and it's long and low and red and you're buying it to get teenage girls to do you]. Nuff said. As for other uses of fuzzy dice...hm. If you had a whole lot of them, and some felt circles, and maybe some card-sized rectangles of cloth, you could do a soft-sculpture installation of a casino.

That was this week's. Now for last week's:

1. What is the deal with having a color named baby blue? Was the guy who named the color, color blind? What are other strange color names?
It's named after blue babies, which are dead babies. The guy wasn't colourblind, he was just friggin' sick. You want strange colour names, how about mauve? Or stone, or sport red [whatever the hell that is, it's in a catalog], or puce, or blush...

2. Why are chocolates and roses traditional Valentine's Day gifts? What are some more creative gift ideas?
Those are traditional because that's what the stores put in the window at that time of year, so nobody knows what the hell else to buy. Instead, you could get power tools, tape, office supplies, socks, jigsaw puzzles, personal lubricant, a set of Time-Life books, chicken bones glued onto red felt in the shape of a heart...uh...running out of ideas...how about just some chocolate?

3. What would be the advantages or disadvantages of hiring a company called Perpetual Kitty, which every 3 months would take away your cat and replace it with a similar looking kitten?
Advantages: Never having to figure out where to bury it when it dies [assuming you don't get a sick or otherwise defective kitten], and never having to have it fixed. Disadvantages: Perpetual Litter Training.

4. What are the best bath toys for kids?
Depends on the kid. Some do well with rubber duckies, some like the Spongebob stuff...others, you really wanna go with a plugged-in hair dryer boat or something.

5. Why are sock puppets put on one's hand?
Well, the Red Hot Chili Peppers tried it the other way, but they couldn't get the mouth to move right.

Okay, now the week before that...

1. Why do some people kill cute little ants?
Because they get in your cute little pants and bite your cute little ass. They also get into your cute little canister of sugar.

2. How much should you tip an acrobat?
You mean, so he'll go away? As much as he wants.

3. Why is the grass always greener on the other side? That hardly seems fair, doesn't it?
It's not greener. That's an optical illusion known as, um...dammit, I majored in art...obfuscato or something.

4. Why do phones have star and pound buttons but not hearts, rainbows, or clovers?
That damn leprechaun owns the copyrights, and he won't sell. I can see why...he DOES make a lot off that cereal, so it's not like he needs the money or anything.

5. How was the spatula invented?
It was invented by the evil Count Spatula, who needed a way to flip over the human kidneys he would customarily fry for breakfast. He tried a fork, but he kept piercing the kidneys and the juice would run out, leaving them tough and stringy.

Now for the week before that...

1. According to the theory of evolution, people are the way they are because it helped us survive. Explain how exactly this relates to teenage angst.
It does a great job of frightening off potential predators, and pretty much everything else with ears.

2. What are some possible medical uses of a kaleidoscope?
You could do some really fascinating colonoscopies.

3. Who invented nerf and why?
It was invented by my mom, who was trying to make an angel food cake.

4. Why do slinkies walk down stairs, but not up stairs? Doesn't that seem like a design flaw to you?
No, it's not. If they could walk upstairs, then I'd have nightmares of the slinkies walking upstairs to my apartment to get me.

5. Why did her parents name Shirley Temple after a drink? How do you think it affected her career?
Well, it was their favourite drink. Besides, the same thing happened to Manhattan, and nothing seems to have happened to...oh wait. Never mind.

All right, now for the one before THAT. Holy Cripes, I'm behind.

1. Why aren't fish used to decorate Christmas trees?
Ever seen a fish that lights up?

2. What is the best answering machine message that you never heard?
My brother's, because I never call him.

3. Should dolls come with instructions? Why or why not?
No. If you can't figure out how to play with a doll, you don't deserve to have any fun.

4. How can you be sure you truely exist and aren't just a figment in someone else's dream? How can you be sure I truly exist?
I can't. Now either turn into Portia deRossi or leave my imagination. Thank you.

5. When in the course of human events? For how long? Why?
Oh, you know...a while back...it was for like a week or so...I think it had something to do with this one dude with a boat, and he got locked out of his house or something, and then there was this other dude with a really ugly date that he was trying to fob off on the first dude, and then they showed up and repo'd his boat, and the ugly chick was like, "whatever," and...you know. And something about liberty and the pursuit of happiness or...something.

Okay, I MUST go to bed.

Night.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Thought for the day: zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Posted by Frida Peeple at 11:27 AM | Comments (0)

"...The Hell?" Thursday

What the hell is this?

Jobless Claims Rise More Then Expected

[italics mine]

Maybe it's because nobody can friggin' READ well enough to fill out their job applications. If the online news sources are hiring writers and editors who don't know the difference between "then" and "than," then I'd sure as hell hate to see the people they turn down.

This, fellow bloggers, is the "journalistic standard" to which people are expecting us to hold ourselves now, based on the utterly hilarious assertion that everybody who can purchase a domain name, load blogging software onto a server, or get a free LiveJournal account is a journalist. Actually, this is great, because it means that when I get in the car and go to Hy-Vee, I'm a racecar driver! And when I take my clothes off prior to showering, I'm a stripper!

Come on, you dipsticks. I distinctly remember being in second grade [I know it was second because we had different classrooms every year] and having a discussion of homophones. This didn't happen in some special gifted class, this happened right in a standard Pennsylvania public elementary school with a standard damn curriculum. Now, I won't go so far as to say that people with poor grammar skills shouldn't blog; I don't believe that [although if you know your spelling and grammar aren't good, there's really no shame in having somebody proofread for you]. But when you have paid professional journalists making the sort of mistake you expect to see on a fourth-grade book report, the whole admonition to "adhere to journalistic standards" just makes me wanna laugh.

You want me to adhere to these standards? Fine, I can do that.

Pope Jon Whatever ii Dies at 56

Frida Peeple, Disassociative Press writer

Pop John Ii who's, real name is John Jacob Jingelhiemershcmitt, kicked the bucket today at teh age of 55. Ppl were wandering y the poope would dye so quikly--I mean, he was only 58!!!!1!--but aperently he had the flue.

It was reporteded that teh poppe have suffered form a long long long long illnes & was not felling well.A spokeman for the Vadikan said 'it was a tragic day 4 all cathlicks and we just prey thatppl will not loose faith in GOd b/c of this tradegy.". and stuff.

nobody no's who will suck suk succc be the next POpe. Ne body who wants 2 be pope has 2 follo a specail screening prosess & a s eries of test.

O wait this artical i linkd 2 says teh poppe isnt really dead atall,he just had a relasp of flooe. Oppsie! lol So neways hes still alive at age 64 tho he probly has a sore but from haveing diaria.

See how easy that was? All you have to do is totally not pay attention to what you're doing! I thought adhering to standards of mechanics, accuracy and coherence would be difficult, but when I discovered there more or less weren't any, the article practically wrote itself.

If you work for the news, please do not write to me with any bleating about libel, journalistic standards, or any of that crap. It's only libel if it ain't true, and you know perfectly sodding well that many of you either can't spell or don't try. And we all know you don't proofread. A quick spin through a few newspapers or news websites is evidence enough of that. And nowhere in your journalism schooling, apparently, were you required to take [and pass] English composition, which would have covered the kind of grammatical niceties that have escaped you, and would have provided you a reference manual to look them up and correct them, if you bothered to keep your damn textbooks. If you did take Comp 101 and 102, and passed them, and kept your handbook [which you should have, if you had any idea you might write for a living], and deigned to refer to it from time to time, then...jeez. I just don't know what to say to that. Get more sleep? [If you do have correct spelling and grammar, and it's one of your colleagues that's the problem, could you please do the English language a favour and try to get them fired?]

As for mistakes in accurate reporting, I have only to dredge up a few articles on paganism to exemplify the sort of side-splittingly inaccurate stories journalists come up with no matter how many facts they have. [The one in which a well-meaning reporter basically said that Wicca and paganism are the same thing, and that Wiccans were "pagan clergy," springs to mind with a chuckle.] If I felt frisky, I could find some news stories reporting the results of scientific studies. You know the ones I'm talking about--the ones where the study shows only a correlation, and you infer, and report, a scientifically un-inferrable direct causation between one factor and the other, because "X causes Y" stories sounds more interesting than "X and Y were found in the same people" stories, and because many people believe the fallacy that correlation and causation are the same thing. You know you do it.

It seems that I'm pointing and laughing every time somebody gets caught with their participles down, but I promise you, for every one of these I actually blog about, there are dozens more that I just roll my eyes at, because what can you do? [I could be a real snob and say things like "at which I roll my eyes," but that just sounds so damn Harvardesque. Also, you're allowed to let prepositions dangle if tucking them in results in mangling the sentence. I checked.]

Bah. I'm done with this. On to something else.

***

Found out that the test I had, which cost $432 and which I thought I was going to have to pay out of pocket because of a deductible...apparently doesn't apply under the deductible and was paid for entirely by the insurance company. For once an HMO did something nice. Thank the gods for small [and not so small] mercies.

Also in the small mercies department was the dental filling that was put in a little over a year ago, which has cracked somewhat [probably due to my constant stress-induced bruxism, of which I'm trying to break myself] and which I thought I was going to have to pay to have redone. The dentist said he'd redo it for free, since it cracked so soon. [This is the same dentist who, while ever so delicately putting finishing touches on my filling--on a day when Dru Sjodin, the 19-year-old Minnesota girl, was still missing and hadn't been found, and was in the news--announced that he'd like to get the kidnapper in the chair and open up his teeth one by one until he said where she was. He kicks ass.]

I still want my tax refund.

And it's already been a long, long week.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Quote for the day: "If I jump up and down in my cubicle, am I an astronaut?" --That one guy from Get Your War On

Posted by Frida Peeple at 09:59 AM | Comments (0)

February 21, 2005

ha.

Bush Appeals to European Allies for Help

BRUSSELS, Belgium - President Bush scolded Russia for backsliding on democracy Monday and urged Mideast allies to take difficult steps for peace, appealing for Europe's help in both troubled areas to "set history on a hopeful course."

I think this is supposed to be the part where Europe tells him to go pound sand. But...

Europe seemed eager for Bush's charm offensive after bitter divisions over global climate control, Iraq and other problems. Dozens of world leaders were hurrying to Brussels for twin summits Tuesday at NATO and the European Union. European officials have complained Bush did not listen to them during his first term, and they wanted to see if he has changed.

Okay, once they find out he hasn't, then they'll tell him to go pound sand. Then since he's so fucktastic at figuring out how to initiate unilateral military strategies, he can jolly well figure out what to do with North Korea all by his lonesome. Which means I'm gonna be moving to Canada anyway, as a nuclear-war refugee instead of as a skilled worker. [Stay and defend the homeland, you say? Sure, I'll just flip off that A-bomb and throw some rocks at it, and that'll stop the fucker dead in its tracks.]

Anybody happen to know what the war refugee camps are like in Canada? Do they have broadband and stuff?

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Posted by Frida Peeple at 08:26 PM | Comments (0)

oh my gods, my head

Frida's No-Fail Headache Recipe

This is best done after a windy snowstorm has swept through your region and left behind a mass of freezing, extremely dry air. Take 1 cold, dry bedroom. Add 1 space heater. Sleep in bedroom, with heater on medium, for 12 hours or until temperature is comfortable and humidity similar to Gobi Desert. Forget to start boiling water for several hours after you get up. If you can slam a few cups of coffee first thing when you wake up, and then have some caffeine withdrawal later, so much the better. Put on robe that has faint BO, not bad, just enough that you want to deodorize it. Do not use Febreze, because Febreze stinks like Satan's grandma's perfume. Use Glade "unscented" which is not really unscented but does work well at getting odours out of fabric. Put robe on, and cope for several hours with faint aroma of "unscented" smell until severe headache develops. Wait til it's too late for Benadryl to do any good. Take Benadryl. Boil some water. Sit in bed and read in a headache-inducing position. Add another pot of water to the stove. Stare at white computer screen. Blog. Breathe in and out, feeling your sinuses desiccate like Egyptian mummy sinuses with each inhalation. Wonder if the mechanic has your car done yet, and if the people at the company with whom you had to cancel your job interview will even deign to schedule you for another appointment. Swear.

***

I wanna be a federal employee and get paid to sleep in on President's Day.

***

My waistline is down 2 inches from the last time I measured, which was several months ago. Not much, but something.

***

I know this headline is referring to pharmaceutical stocks, but it just sounded funny.

Drugs Brighten Weak European Stocks

They do that to all sorts of things, don't they? At least, the good ones do.

***

Has anybody ever ordered from...oh, for example, Xandria...and had it take over two weeks from the ship date to get your stuff? Especially when the ship date has been confirmed? I've never had mail-order things take more than a week from date of shipment. Is it because it's tax season or Valentine's season or some shit?

I'm waiting until Friday and then I'm gonna ask for a refund. That gives the U.S. Pudpulling Service 3 full weeks to get the parcel from one point in the continental U.S. to another point in the continental U.S., which is way great plenty of fucking time even for them, unless it's being shipped via donkey cart.

You do not wanna fuck with my adult novelty shipments when I have a sinus headache.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Thought for the day: What is it that makes Jolly Ranchers jolly? Is it because you suck on them?

Posted by Frida Peeple at 11:40 AM | Comments (0)

February 20, 2005

I...

was about to say, "don't have a damn thing to say," but I do, actually.

Whoever at Movable Tripe decided that hitting "enter" while in the title field should be a "save entry" command is a cock.

More later.

sbt...oh, fuck it.

Posted by Frida Peeple at 07:27 AM | Comments (0)

February 18, 2005

"They can put a man on the moon, but they can't yadda yadda"

A lot of employers, in an effort to give better lip service to honouring the privacy of their employees, have moved from invasive urine tests [which I would still be okay with, as long as the nurse left the bathroom] to blood tests and hair tests. Now they're developing protocols for saliva drug tests, which would be even less invasive and completely pain-free. This would be wonderful [unless you're a casual pot user who's not toking up on anybody's time but your own].

So if they can develop totally noninvasive [corporally, that is] drug testing techniques, why can't they come up with a half-decent means of diagnosing ovarian problems that doesn't involve making you hold an entire bladderfull of pee while somebody fucks you with an electric stick?*

I'm just sayin'.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...
_____
*"Only the tip is inserted," they say: total bullshit. I always got the R0n J3r3my treatment with the damn thing. Every stinkin' time. I suspect doctors order them to punish you for asking questions about your plumbing. "You know too much about your own body; I prescribe having somebody violate you with an inanimate object and charge you $400 for it, then send me pictures so I can look at them and tell you there's nothing wrong with you. That'll learn ya."

Posted by Frida Peeple at 08:12 AM | Comments (0)

February 14, 2005

Productivity enhancer

Chris Doyle has a Flash thingy that lets you make Lego people. It's somewhat reminiscent of the thing that lets you make South Park characters. [They both rule, of course.]

This is me at work. [Except I don't generally wear a tie.]

tell me why I don't like Mondays...

You can tell it's at work because of the searing flames of Hell in the background. The sword is for trimming the extremities of people who put stuff into boxes with missing flaps so that I have to dump the whole box out into a different box that will actually close properly, and then hide the flapless box so nobody uses it again.

[Link purloined from Rori, who recast herself as a Lego dominatrix.]

***

In a mildly interesting but unrelated note, this is entry #300.

***

I want my fricking mail-order stuff, and I want it now. [said through gritted teeth]

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Posted by Frida Peeple at 06:47 AM | Comments (0)

Happy Monday!

sweet nothings

Following is a rant that grew [and grew and grew] from a response to a question in the Sunday Brunch meme. I decided to change my answer over at LJ to something shorter and less inflammatory, and post my real, unvarnished, candy-coating-free feelings here. Many of them are things I've expressed before, but they still piss me off, and I've managed to collect and encapsulate them more neatly here. It is also the debut of my neologism describing romantic love: "schtuppy love." I think that about says it all.

So.

5) What is your favorite Valentine décor? (hearts, cupids, etcetera)
I don't put up Valentine decorations. For one thing, it doesn't have anything to do with any holidays I actually care about [it's closest to Imbolc, but it really doesn't correspond to it in any way that I can see]. For another thing, it has become a representation of schtuppy love [i.e. love that is characterized by a sexual element, and which is understood to have fallen apart if the sexual element departs]. Even the little candy hearts express this: "Be mine." Be your what? Your tax consultant? We know what "mine" is, it's the same "mine" as in the schtuppy-love songs. People that would ordinarily label adherence to the Greco-Roman mythos as heresy and devil worship apparently have no problem with ubiquitous depictions of Cupid [whose Greek name is Eros--the root of the word "erotic"; who is the son of Venus/Aphrodite; and whose domain is, specifically, romantic and sexual love--he's basically a guy who shoots people with arrows to make them horny for each other].

Now, from this, I suppose it sounds as though I have an axe to grind with the whole idea of schtuppy love. That's close to the truth, but not quite. What I do have a problem with are the myths that people have about it:

~That you must have it to be happy, no matter how many other close friendships and family relationships you have.
~That being without it is always a horrible empty experience akin being in hell.
~That the only possible reason a person would forgo it is extreme heartbreak and bitterness [which you should get over], and not any other reason, such as taking a time-out to work on one's personality and eliminate relationship-damaging behaviours; an absence of the emotional need for that particular kind of relationship; a preference for less complicated relationships such as friendships, which are lower-maintenance; a low sex drive, which the person may or may not be able--or willing--to fix; or the intersection of several of these, as in my case.
~That this type of relationship is superior to all other types of relationship [apparently because it's the only kind where you get laid].
~That if you're not involved in it, or seeking it out, there is Something Wrong With You and you should see a doctor, therapist, priest, &c. to correct this.

I'm sure I could cough up a couple more, given the time, but this will suffice. The point is, wherever people get this tripe, be it from women's magazines, radio, novels, movies, or any other media, living as though the myths are true does not improve their lives at all unless they luck into a relationship that matches the myths. The media doesn't give a crap about depicting love in a realistic way. They want to make money, and depictions of idealised romantic love make more money than depictions of messy, realistic romantic love [except in some comedy films, where deviation from the ideal relationship forms part of the basis for the humour], or depictions of fulfilling platonic interpersonal relationships. Even the phrase "fulfilling platonic interpersonal relationships" will put most people, including me, to sleep, and I like a happy ending as much as anybody else. But don't think for a minute that what's on the screen, or what Usher's singing about, is normal. When you hold the ideal up as the norm, nearly everybody who strives for it winds up miserable. [Women, we've already encountered this in the body image department with supermodels and Barbie.]

The media does this with all holidays: there's a "perfect Christmas" with snow and a big tree and lots of presents and holy-sounding carols playing; there's a "perfect Easter" with giggling kids bounding gleefully through the yard looking for eggs; there's a "perfect Thanksgiving" with a big steaming turkey on a table surrounded by a dozen family members, all with bowed heads, giving thanks. You don't see a lot of brown Christmases, or people with no money for presents, or family squabbles, or people having baloney at Thanksgiving. That's sometimes depicted as how it is, but not ever as how it's supposed to be. It's never hinted that it might be all right not to blow your whole paycheck on crap so you look generous.

And they do it to Val's Day too, the "perfect" thing: Everybody's hooked up or has a date, everybody has sexy lingerie [and looks fantastic in it], everybody can afford roses and candy and jewelry, everybody who's receiving those things wants them, everybody's gonna get their freak on, and everybody's gonna live happily ever after in Smoochyland. [Reading that sentence over just gave me an almost uncontrollable urge to laugh hysterically.]

Is it nice to have a special day set aside where people who have romantic relationships can cultivate them? Yes, I think that's healthy. But I think it's gotten taken to a really pukey level, the same way other holidays have, and it certainly doesn't do anything to counter the preposterous and factually unsupportable idea that romantic love is more necessary than oxygen and other relationships are kinda just chopped liver. I'm sure a lot of people feel that way about their romantic attachments or marriages; I used to feel that way too, until I realised it was pretty much my hormones talking. People seem to put a lot of stock in what their hormones say to them, even though these are the same hormones produced by an endocrine system that has not evolved in a thousand centuries, when we lived in caves, ate raw mammoth, and needed to reproduce as much as possible because we entered puberty at 20 and were usually dead by 30 or 40. Our hormones and we are not, so to speak, playing according to the same edition of Hoyle; and the rules have changed dramatically since our gonads were issued their copy. Your hormones don't know what millenium it is, so I would advise humouring them when necessary and ignoring them most of the rest of the time when possible.

And I suppose that's my problem with Val's Day: it's become a testament to the type of love that's fueled more by hormones than by any emotional need for companionship; and watching people blindly obey their hormones because they think it's their heart talking and it never occurred to them that the two might not be the same thing...just sorta rankles me.

Boy, that turned long. Oh well, I'm about done.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Thought for the day: Two things, when juxtaposed in my mind, struck me as ironic: First, the reframing by some feminists of Valentine's Day as V-Day, a celebration of the vagina; and second, the tendency of men to give women large boxes of chocolate, which, being full of sugar, increases one's chances of getting a yeast infection [especially if, afterwards, you use your celebrated V to the point of irritating it]. Celebrate it today, Monistat it next week. Happy V-Day!

Posted by Frida Peeple at 05:10 AM | Comments (0)

February 10, 2005

later, later...

The ever-elusive and mysterious 210 showed itself on the scale today. If I can keep up an under-2000-calorie-a-day plan, I might even spot the even rarer 209 soon. That is, assuming that the smell of people cooking at work doesn't drive me to grab a fire extinguisher and break open the snack machine, since the vending machine fucker took away the sandwich machine [may his misshapen balls grow infected and drop off]. I already feel like I'm working in hell without having be hungry and smell food all damn night; my idea of compromise will be trying to find a kind of Glade that everybody likes, because there's no way I'm gonna put up with a constant food smell in my work area. Unless, of course, they want to all come to the doctor with me and explain why I'm having such a hard time losing.

And the next person that mentions "willpower" to me is going to see precisely what happens when I reroute willpower away from the not-screaming, not-blowing-my-top and not-quitting-my-job departments [which are already seriously undersupplied] and into the not-eating department. Because that's what I'm using the bulk of my willpower for now: making myself go to that dogdick job, not walking out until it's time to go home, and keeping the words "I quit" inside my mouth where they belong until I find something else, which I haven't yet. Oh yeah, and not breaking the radio. And watching people who need to lose weight much worse than I do eat things like pizza. Of course, some of those people in that category smoke, too, so if they're on the slow-suicide track, the pizza's just the right thing.

A couple caveats to that: For one thing, it's not that I don't think people should ever eat pizza or anything else unhealthy. Like they say, you only go round once [or at least once at a time], and I think it's proper to want to enjoy what there is to enjoy. But--and I don't suppose I can speak for anybody else, just me--however many times I go round, I don't wanna go huffing and puffing, waddling, wearing a tent and feeling like a beluga whale when I roll over in bed, not if I can help it. Why would I, if I can be moderate and still enjoy some of the things I enjoy, savouring them all the more because I'm not binging on them?

It's just...if you say you're using willpower, but you're not actually losing any weight, the doctor, and everybody else, is not gonna give a shit what you claim. They'll just assume you're not trying because they're not seeing any results. Why care what they think? Kind of a dumb question, really: You have to be around these people. If they think you're lazy, they won't respect you. If they don't respect you, you can't work effectively with them. Unless you're a fucking lighthouse keeper, you sort of have to worry a little bit about what people think. They're not gonna care that it takes nearly all the will you have to stay in a maintenance calorie range instead of stuffing your face with everything in sight. You can tell them that you KNOW you're using willpower, because if you weren't, your weekly grocery bill would be half again what it is; they don't give a fuck. People have a set of notions in their mind about weight loss and pretty much everything else, and if what they see of you doesn't match what they expect to see, they blame you. You're lazy, or you're lying about what you eat, or something.

I hope people can get used to me being an even bigger and more obnoxious cunt than I am now. Willpower is, in essence, resistance. Resistance creates stress. Everybody knows this. Yet somehow, somebody who's already taking multiple drugs for the effects of stress is supposed to put up resistance to yet another thing, without ever taking it out on anybody [because that's a sin or something] or letting it affect one's work or letting it show in any way--which in itself creates stress, because you're creating one more thing to resist: the need to let the stress out.

Isn't Minnesota Nice just fucktastic? And people wonder where the suicide rate around here comes from. Here's a recipe for ya. Take umpteen million people. Apply several mutually exclusive sets of rules for socialisation, and punish liberally for deviating from any of them. Stew at 10°F for 40+ years or until bitter.

***

In other news, I just found out that the deal to sell the building to the "Let's Open A Mexican Restaurant In A Town Where The Existing Eateries Fight Like Gulls Over A Few Hundred Customers" people--it fell through. The deal, that is. And if the floor weren't hardwood, the people would have probably fallen through either. Turns out, when the pipes froze in December, not only did the ones under ME freeze, so did the ones in the basement. The prospective owners came to take a look, found the basement and restaurant a mess, and said "nooooo way."

Of course, the landlords couldn't tell me this. I heard it from a lady at work.

If you're thinking of buying a business with apartments over it and leasing them out, do the renters of the world a huge favour. Try to actually learn something about being a landlord. Wouldja? Because if all you focus on is your business, and ignore the tenants, you're gonna find yourself without rent income, scratching your head wondering why nobody sticks around. Listen to what they want and accommodate it without complaints whenever possible. They're not part of your downstairs business, and they don't go away when the shop closes at night. And if you go, "well, that's how it is, they can like it or go somewhere else," then they probably will, eventually and you will end up in the aforementioned head-scratching situation. This will be especially true once a few years have gone by and people get word of what kind of landlord you are.

But for now, all will be relatively quiet. Except, of course, for landlord-type people tromping up and down the basement stairs [which are right under my stairs and make a hellacious noise].

***

I realise I'm about 3 weeks behind on Weird Ones, and there's a new Witches Weekly up. I think that's gonna wait til tomorrow or Saturday. It's been a 36-hour week already, and I got another 10 to go.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Random strange news story for the day: This guy has the right idea.

Posted by Frida Peeple at 10:31 AM | Comments (0)

February 07, 2005

the chimps are still steering the ship

Bush Proposes Steep Cuts in $2.57T Budget

WASHINGTON - President Bush [gods, my stomach turns to see those two words together] proposed a $2.57 trillion budget Monday that would erase scores of programs and slice Medicaid, disabled housing and many more but still worsen federal deficits by $42 billion over the next five years.

~snip~

Forty-eight education programs would be eliminated, including one for ridding drugs from schools. In all, more than 150 government-wide programs would be eliminated or slashed deeply, including Amtrak subsidies, oil and gas research, and grants to communities hiring police officers.

Bush would slow the growth of benefit programs by $137 billion over the next decade, nearly quadruple the savings he proposed a year ago with little success. Chief among the targets would be Medicaid, the federal-state health insurance program for the poor and disabled, but farmers' payments, student loans and veterans medical services were also on the chopping block.

"It's a budget that focuses on results," Bush told reporters after meeting with his Cabinet. "The taxpayers of America don't want us spending our money into something that's not achieving results." [underscores mine]

Well, thank gods somebody finally saw through the complete frivolity of useless things like student loans, health care for the poor and hiring police officers. It's about time they got rid of this outlandish porkbarrel bullshit and got back to the important things, like defending our freedom from hastily assembled groups of dipshit bombers who aren't attacking the US and would most likely leave us completely alone if we just left their damn country.

[/vitriolic sarcasm]

What I wanna know is, how the hell can you write a budget so retarded that you stop giving money to pretty much everybody and the deficit STILL goes up? Where the hell is all this money going?? Do I even wanna know?? Am I gonna run out of question marks before I'm done with this post???

If I Ran My Household Budget The Way Bush Proposes To Run Our Budget

~The student loan people would have to just settle for $50 a month instead of $85 like they want.

~I'd stop paying my medical bills and probably most of my utilities.

~I'd blow all my money at McDonald's, MallWart and the gun shop, and fling the wrappers and receipts all over the place, completely oblivious to clearly marked garbage cans.

~I'd bitch to the IRS that I didn't have any money to pay for anything and demand that my taxes be reduced. I'd claim a tax deduction on the firearms because they're necessary to defend myself against this one creepy-looking wifebeater who lives in my town who might have a firearm or who, if he doesn't, might purchase one at some time in the future.

~I'd refuse to pay to have the locks on my car replaced, and then demand tougher sentencing when somebody broke into it.

I could go on and on. Point is, how far do you think I'd get with a budget like that?

The only thing that would get an obscenity like this passed would be the fact that it's not an election year and a lot of people will have forgotten about it by the time the Congresspeople who vote on it come up for reelection. But the people it affects won't have forgotten. It has great potential for being a career killer, and maybe their self-interest will end up working for us for a change. I hope they leave it to die gasping on the floor like a heart attack victim who's so ugly nobody has the guts to give them mouth-to-mouth.

And that's Monday for ya.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Posted by Frida Peeple at 08:22 PM | Comments (0)

'k, it's like this...

We don't know why the comments don't work. So what I'm gonna do in the next week or two is install WordPress on the new server and import the whole shootin' match over there.

I don't have the faintest idea how in the hell I'm gonna do this. I hope there are instructions around here someplace.

In the meantime, there's still e-mail. It always helps to mention the blog in the subject line, because if I don't recognise the sender and it looks like it might be a spam or a virus, it goes in the circular file.

Once I've moved, expect some snarling about how WordPress is different, even if it IS better. I hate changing anything. But that's life.

So watch this space, or something.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Posted by Frida Peeple at 04:03 AM | Comments (0)

February 06, 2005

drumming fingers against the one small clean spot on the desk

I haven't heard anything back about comments yet. Apparently there's still an error. In the meantime, there's always email...

***

Flat tires suck. But they don't suck as bad when you live on the same block as the garage and the mechanic is willing to come by, pump it up, and take it in to fix it for you. :) However, it did prevent me from getting to an opening of an art show by one of my former professors [my advisor, the lady who taught me watercolour, and an incredible person]; that blows. But the show will hang for several weeks, so I can still go see it...

***

My brother announced to my mom that he's gonna give up custody of the kids because he can't take it anymore, and he's going to call all the family members and ask who can take them. Of course none of us can. I, for one, would have to instantly get off nights and onto a day job that pays more than what I make now, which is precisely what I've been looking for for 2 years and haven't been able to find; I'd have to move into a two- or three-bedroom apartment [two if I wanted to sleep in the living room, or if I only took one of them]; and I'd have to instantly develop a great deal of patience and parenting skills that I totally don't have. Also I'd have to conceal from the authorities that I'm Wiccan, because there are a lot of law enforcement and social services personnel who are either stupid, uninformed about other religions, or flat-out misinformed by the bullshit that arose during the Satanic panic of the 80's. I'm sure there are judges and social workers who think that everybody that's not Christian or Jewish is some kind of devil worshipper, and there have been cases of people having their kids taken away for being pagan, because an ex made allegations about what pagans do, and nobody knew any better, so they believed the ex.

In addition, the foster care system looks askance at any potential single parent, as they'd rather place children in a two-parent home. This is something I can agree with, especially in these kids' case, because they're a couple of little sociopathic drama queens [much more so than the average child] and two parents are harder to snow than one. And frankly, I think they could use a better example right now than a guy who lies to everybody, pisses all his money away, can't get himself up to go to work in the morning, and has literally flat-out said that nothing in his life has ever been his fault.

So I couldn't take either or both of them, even if I wanted to. The court would never let me, for a handful of reasons. [Not only that, I don't have a TV, and I have no intention of getting one. They would NOT like that.] My other brother couldn't take them, unless he wanted to be a single parent, move, and give up all hope of getting his Ph. D. before he's too old to get hired in the places he wants to be. I would be facing a similar problem, in that there wouldn't be time to take even online courses and get another degree. I would barely have the time now, and with a kid to take care of, I certainly wouldn't have the money to pay for tuition. If either of us wanted to give up our careers to raise kids, we'd have had our own damn kids. Sounds heartless, but that's how it is. And really, would it be fair to the kids to place them with a family member who has little money, little space, absolutely no parenting experience whatsoever, and no time to spend with them, just because it's a family member?

As for my folks, they simply don't have the space or the money; and for gods' sake, they're both in their 60's, and some days they can barely move around for arthritis and other old-age complaints. So that pretty much leaves either a cousin, who I seriously doubt is gonna take the kids, or foster care. Foster care, though, would allow visitation from grandparents; I don't know about aunts and uncles. But we could write and send them presents, and probably arrange to see them occasionally--which is about the way it is now. The younger one is going to have a horrible time adjusting to being away from his dad [he goes into an appalling funk if he has to be away from him for more than 48 hours, or if my brother is late in picking him up from Grandma's], but I have a feeling the older one is actually plotting to get taken away. I think she believes she would be happier somewhere else, and she could very well be right.

They need counseling, and they need far better counseling than what the county usually provides. Somebody whose bachelor's still has wet ink on it is going to be completely snowed. They need somebody who can see through all the manipulative bullshit they pull, and figure out a way to teach them why it's wrong, because they honestly don't seem to have any idea. My brother will never be able to afford that. If he even had that kind of money, he'd blow through it all on computer equipment and clothes and feel perfectly justified in doing so. They need somebody who won't stand over them and lecture them while they're trying to do their homework. They need somebody who doesn't talk--in their presence--about all the opportunities he could have if he didn't have them. They need somebody who can set a half-decent example in telling the truth for its own sake, being on time, budgeting money properly, setting priorities, respecting others, and being responsible for one's actions. He can't set any kind of good example in any of those things. I probably couldn't set a good example in some of them, but he's just...it's like his sense of responsibility froze at 18 and just never developed any further. [He's 38 now.] He wants the same thing he's always wanted--to cut an impressive figure, to impress people and have them respect him, but not have to do the work to get there. You can kinda guess what sort of success rate that plan has, unless the person intends to be an impostor all their life, and he's not anywhere near a good enough liar to pull that off. He wants a more glamourous life than most people ever get, probably thinks he's entitled to it [for some reason which I suspect is connected to extreme self-centeredness], and he'll lie, cheat, and--not quite steal, but ask for money for one thing and then spend part of it on something else, which is close--to get as close to that lifestyle as he can get. He's favoured flashiness over substance for the whole 28 years I've known him. He wants to impress, impress, impress, and until he lets go of the craving to impress everybody he sees, he'll always be caught in the same trap he's in now.

Then, too, he announced his decision on Saturday morning. No social services office or court is open until Monday, and he could completely change his mind by then. His mind, or what's left of it: according to Ma, it sounds like he's finally beamed down one too many times. His bio dad was paranoid schizophrenic, and the years of stress may have finally broken him down and triggered a latent tendency to psychosis. Stress + hereditary tendency = schizophrenic episodes, and if you don't have enough of the second to cause it on its own, just add liberal doses of the first until you get there.

I don't know. With any luck, whatever happens will end up being something good for those two kids.

So. Yeah.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Stupid government thing for the day: The Minnesota Dept. of Revenue has changed their income tax filing system so that you can no longer send in W-2's and 1099's. Instead, you must fill out a two-page form with your name, social security number, and the pertinent state information from the W-2's and 1099's. It has space for up to 18 W-2's and 12 1099's. [How many fucking people had 18 jobs?] I'm still not clear as to whether you have to include page 2 if you don't use it. I think I might, if it doesn't cost extra. Just to give them back a little of the pain in the ass that this is giving me. I also found out that since they can't be bothered to have people read it and are instead feeding it through a computer, you have to type your name and address on your return in ALL CAPS. I found this out, naturally, after I'd written everything in normally the way I've always done. I'm not gonna start a new form. I'm gonna use whiteout. And if their computer chokes on it, that's just too fucking bad. I'd have to fill out another return anyway. I hope they get a huge headache from it. When my federal return is 1 page, and my state return is 3...there is something rotten in Minnesota. Of course, we know its name is Pawlenty, but that's just something we'll have to ride out until the next election. I don't think his proposed budget will win him any votes, especially the bit that would cut all unmarried people without dependent children, and some poor families, completely out of MinnesotaCare. You know, because if you're a selfish bastard who refuses to breed [or you're divorced and your children are grown], and you don't have sense enough to work for somebody who provides health insurance [or you do but can't afford it], you can pretty much just fuck off and die. If it passes, over half the people that work at Mallwart are gonna be uninsured, because Mallwart thinks its employees are expendable animals. So if the budget passes, and you live in Minnesota, and you shop at Mallwart, don't let the employees breathe on you, because they may have some illness that was left untreated because nobody thinks poor adults are worth giving health care to. And wear rubber gloves, because they might have sneezed on the merchandise.

And this is turning into a whole other entry. So I'll stop.

Posted by Frida Peeple at 06:49 AM | Comments (0)

February 03, 2005

new pet peeve

People who, upon learning of your dislike for something, feel it necessary to needle you about it and rub it in, a sort of, "Ha ha, I know you hate [whatever] and you have to put up with it! Ha ha!" I keep running into a lot of this lately. The mental image I get is of a little kid who pokes the animals at the petting zoo with a sharp stick because other beings' distress, and their captivity to it, is amusing or mollifying to him somehow. Whatever the reason, I still just end up feeling like an animal in a cage that's being poked with a stick, especially if I'm in a situation where getting away from the person is difficult or impossible. But, you know, that's why I'm here anyway. For other people to be amused by me, or profit by me, or for me to be available to be their bitch in some other capacity.

People wonder why I'm so demonstrative with feelings. It's because if I'm not, they seem to forget I have them. Of course, that works all right until you meet somebody who thinks other people's emotions are entertaining, and stomps on all your buttons and yanks on all your strings to get as much fun, ha-ha, whee-look-at-the-upset-person emotional entertainment they can get out of you. You meet enough of them, and then you have to shut your fucking feelings off because everybody else says, "well, you're just letting them get to you" and it's suddenly your fault for being emotionally available, because apparently you're not supposed to do that or something. So you disconnect all the buttons until you're so damn disconnected that people complain you're not in touch with your feelings. And you know you're not, because you can't identify half of what you feel anymore.

People, if you wanna torment something, go get a small furry animal and put electrodes on it or whatever sick shit you like to do. Just leave me alone.

***

Oh yeah. I got a root canal. The tooth was rotten all the way to the nerve and a little infected. Wasn't as bad as it sounds. He used so damn much novocaine, I can still feel a little residual tingle 10 hours later. Usually it wears off after about 4 or 5. It feels a little tender, but it's nothing like it was. At least I'll be able to eat vegetable fucking soup without tooth pain that sends me into a crying jag. That has to be the worst pain I have ever had in my life. I've had cramps so bad my vision went grey around the edges, but this was worse. And they need to find better ways to treat nerve pain. Tylenol's a joke. Naprosyn's a joke. Nerve pain looks at four Advils, laughs, and tells them to go wash its car. If anybody out there is developing a narcotic whose addictive potential is small enough to make it a potential OTC product....HURRY UP!

In the meantime, I'll have to see if my mom wants to sell any of her Ultram...

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Thought for the day: Why did naproxen sodium even end up being OTC? Is it because it's so shamefully ineffective at killing pain that nobody wanted to write a prescription for it anymore? How did it ever get by the FDA as a painkiller anyway--isn't that false advertising? Shouldn't it say "complete goddamn waste of money and possible organ damager" on the bottle instead?

Posted by Frida Peeple at 08:10 PM | Comments (0)

February 01, 2005

As The Stomach Turns

Knee fixed. Strained ligament. It IS, funnily enough, something that can be fixed with ice and, if necessary, a couple day's worth of knee braces. I don't know exactly what happens when he tapes up a leg, but whatever it is, it works. So, ice pack during break and after work [if I remember] and it should be right as rain...

the tooth. Let me say that again...

The Tooth.

The Tooth of Complete Fucking Doom.

Sweet Baby Mithras.

I wheedled an appointment for the eighth out of the dentist's receptionist, but I have a feeling that by then I'll be begging for a sledgehammer to the skull, or perhaps a nice lethal injection of something. The pharmacist said it might be a good idea to just sit in their office and wait to be seen as a squeeze-in. I might try that, and if THEY can't see me, I'm jolly well going to find somebody who will, and loyalty be damned.

Except I lost my dental insurance card. Assuming they sent me one. I don't remember. I think the boss has the group number.

And I found out that maximum strength Anbesol works for, like, fifteen minutes. Way to go. What is it with these things that only work for fifteen minutes, but then you're only supposed to take them four times a day? What the hell good does that do?

Some people's bodies are temples. Mine is a soap opera. If I could keep my mind off the pain and on something else, I'd be talking about something else, believe me.

Maybe I'll tell Radio Hog exactly what I think of him and get him to give me a good right cross and loosen that bastard up. Then a string and a doorknob should do the rest...

same bitch time, same ouch channel...

Blonde joke for the day:
Q: How do you get a blonde's eyes to light up?
A: [highlight for answer] Shine a flashlight in her ear.

Posted by Frida Peeple at 08:20 PM | Comments (0)

The Tooth Hurts, Or, Somebody Get Me A Pliers...

...a dental mirror, and a bottle of Parrot Bay.

I am ready to fucking kill somebody over this tooth. It feels like there are tiny little tooth trolls in my mouth giving me a root canal without anaesthesia.

I have an appointment on the seventeenth. Sweet Apollo, let me make it until then. Or let somebody with an 8 am appointment next Monday cancel...

At least the Aciphex is working nicely--no more battery-acid-in-the-esophagus feeling. And the flu is totally gone. And with any luck, the chiro will get my knee straightened out so my tibia doesn't feel like it's protruding at an unnatural angle. [I'm hoping it's just like bursitis or something that will get better with ice and a week's use of knee braces.] So that's all looking up. And I sent off for some information about online courses in criminal justice. So it's not like everything sucks. A lot of stuff has gotten taken care of, or is in the process of being taken care of, lately.

Soon, all that will remain is the tooth. The awful, terrible tooth. My greatest fear is that the tooth will come out.

I don't think I can handle the tooth.

same bitch time, same bitch channel...

Thought for the day: Have faith in the tooth, for the tooth will set you free.

Posted by Frida Peeple at 09:37 AM | Comments (0)