Sunday, January 30, 2005

The Universe Converges

After 6-8 weeks of not hearing from my buddy Paul, I got a call from his partner today asking me if i have heard from him. I was in a stunned sort of silence when Fred asked me if I knew where Paul was. I thought for a second that perhaps there was a tif while they were out last night, as I know that has happened before at least once when one of them or the other spitefully did not come home.

Fred went on to explain to me that they were taken to a temporary apartment for the estate sale which had been planned by Paul's neices to help him liquidate some funds. He has been sorting through his many antiques deciding which he was keeping for months and the time of the sale had arrived.

After the sale, the neices showed up at the apartment with Fred's sister. In a nutshell, the sister whisked away Fred and the neices took Paul to rehab after just having sold everything. Everything. Including the Explorer. Including anything belonging to Fred. The boys were left with nothing but the clothes on their backs. And Fred was warned off, threatened with legal action should he ever again attempt to contact Paul.

I say boys. To be more accurate, these boys are in their 50s and 60s.

This conversation lasted all of 5 minutes, and then my cell phone went dead. Dead as a doornail. I plugged it in ti recharge hoping Fred would soon call back, and then went to sit with E in the library to relate the sage to her. We were sitting there pondering our collective disbelief, when the dogs all three are barking at someone in the driveway.

E, facing out, says "Omigod, it's Paul!"

This is not even five minutes after my cell phone had cut off.


The saga continues to unfold...

Friday, January 28, 2005

new home theater experience

I did my initial test run on the dvd drive in my laptop. Woo. Hoo.

I was sitting here on my new chaise in the bedroom in the dark. All comfy and cozy, burried in my down comforter. Nola was liking it too as she was quite burried with me. I got out the trusty earbuds and plugged them in. I then proceeded with my guiltiest of guilty pleasures. Star Wars. Movie 4 and 5, or 1 and 2 for purists. Next in line, of course, is Return of the Jedi.

I picked up the DVD set at Costco last week. Loving it. Who needs a TV in the bedroom.

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

Divine Dinner @ DiVino

This week marks the UCT conference which E's company puts on each year. It is held in downtown Houston at the George R Brown Convention Center, and ideally, everyone from her job stays at the Hyatt for the duration. This involves ordering room service or eating at the hotel dining rooms, or otherwise eating out and being reimbursed for expenses. There is a cocktail party on Wednesday night which we usually go to at least to make an appearance, but this year, she decided to pass on all the above.

However, she does allow for us to have a lovely dinner out on her expense account. Since everyone with a spouse has them down for dinner, it seems an ok thing to do, and the bossman has always reimbursed her in the past, even though she does not eat with everyone else. This year we decided to go to DiVino.

I. Am. So. Full.

We started with the shrimp on rosemary skewers served over grilled polenta with a spicy marinara sauce. Yumm. The challenge on such a dish is to remove the shrimp from the skewer (4 shrimp, 1 stalk of rosemary) without wearing the spicy marinara. We appreciated some success.

E followed with a caesar salad. I passed on salad, because the description of my entree included mixed field greens.

E chose the veal scallopini which was crusted with Parmesan and had a side of grilled rosemary potatoes. Very delish.

I chose the beef tenderloin. The waiter was confused and I ended up with the filet mignon. Same basic cut of meat, so I kept it. They also cook to order, so I did not want to have to wait another 30 minutes for the correction to be made. It did not hurt that the Parmesan mashed potatoes as my side item were fabulous.

The waiter corrected the order by fixing the bolll to reflect the lower price of what had ordered, and he then brought us out a slice of heaven. They have a desert that is a layer of the best chocolate mousse I have ever had sandwiched between two layers of extremely moist chocolate cake with aq dark chocolate layer of icing on top. I think it all melted in my mouth. We eill likely add them to our dessert list of places to go with desserts that are primo which also serve wine.

We do the wine and dessert excursions as often as we do dinner out.

It's a good thing.

My Aunt just messaged me and was telling me my mom was moved to from the hospital to the rehab facility. The doc told my mom 20 days there, but my aunt thinks it will be more like a few months. But don't repeat that to mom. She also gave me her cell phone number and told me it is best to call between 8-12 pm. Like, I should be on the phone to her right now.

I love my mom dearly. She's my mom. But calling her requires preparation. At the very least, the mindset that I will be talking to my mother. Same with my father, but my mother a little more acutely.

Tomorrow, I will call her tomorrow.

I am listening to a new cd I got last week at Sloan/Hall. It is called Music For Cocktails part 2 and is a 2 disc set. Very urban loungy and I really like it. It is great for writing or working otherwise on my laptop because am not distracted by the familiarity of lyrics. Also, it is a little uptempo, so there is a groove going on with my typing which is nice. Easy.

The song I am most ennamored (I amreally missing the spell check feature in blogger wehich I am sure is a mac thing that it is gone) is 'Wait Til You See Him' by Ella Fitzgerald. It is unlike anything I have ever heard from her, and it sort of reminds me of 'History Repeating" (lovelovelove itt) which Shirley Bassey did with the Propeller Heads. Not that it sounds similar, but the way it is a departure stylewise for the artist.

It is the first time I am using iTunes. I am pretty sure there is no compatability with my Dell DJ, which is sucky, but I am still going to try it. I read on the Dell site that there are drivers to download and workaround solutions, so I will attempt it sooner or later, but I am not pressed to do it immediately. I have no problem ripping what i want onto my laptop and using my Dell DJ with the desk top. What I do find curious, though, is that thesound is excellent with a pair of ear buds, but the cd driver is very loud and there is crappy soundwithout the ear buds. Again, no big deal.


Tired today, yesterday, too. I worked this morning from 8-1 and had a nap just a bit ago. When E gets home from her walk we are going to dinner. On her expense account. Sweet. Somewhere foofy is in order. Somewhere that serves iron.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Sitting on the chaise

Not soaking up the sun, but enjoying the comfort of the new chair in the new bedroom. The old room with the new bed is more accurate. Nola can't decide if she wants tobe perched on the pillow behind me or on the end of the chaise at my feet. Currently, her choice is on the pillow behind me while draping herself like a stole across my shoulders and letting her head hang down to watch what I am doing.

I have to take T in to school this morningand it would be the perfect day to ditch yoga and go sit at the cafe with my laptop, but I amnot going to do that as I did not make it to class last night. Monday night is easy to ditch as the group is rather toxic to me, always giving me a headache.

Time to scoot.

Monday, January 24, 2005


Ahhhhhhhhhh...that is the sigh of the old couch leaving the building.

Well, it has not exactly left yet, but it should be exiting by noon today.

Yesterday, after a hmmmm......loungy morning in bed, we got up around noon thirty and went for breakfast. Empire Cafe was packed, Cafe Artiste had parking but no table, so we just went to La Madeleine.

Once we were out, the plan for E to go into work to finish up some signs was bagged and we decided to go to the container store. There are some cd storage boxes I wanted her approval on and it was really going to be just a look and see type trip.

We decided to get different ones than I had initially thought (which were not quite what I wanted anyway, I was sort of settling from being tired of looking). They are a silk fabric covered box in a jewel tone sort of cover. We picked up three and will see from there if we need more and how many we think we might want. I am thinking we should get three more at least to account for expansion so that in the future if they are discontinued and we need more we are not SOL.

We also got a small step can trash can for the bathroom since the dogs, two of them anyway, have had a recent affinity for the bathroom trash. E said "Today, I want one now!"

Of course, it is impossible to go to The Container Store and not go to Storehouse Furniture which is right next door. We have been salivating over the furniture at Storehouse for a couple of years now. I dub it 'adult furniture' as opposed to transitional furniture from Ikea, which in some situations *can* be adult furniture.

At some point in the past year, we were driving around and saw a Storehouse clearance center. OMG. A lot of the stuff they have is incomplete sets, stuff refused due to damage, special orders that were cancelled or returned, or stuff just discontinued. We have been watching there randomly for stuff we know we want.

We decided to stop by yesterday and see what was there. E was just having an intuitive moment or something, and what a delight that she was.

We got our bed frame, returned because it had a slight nick on one of the back legs, a chaise for the bedroom which I can sink into for reading or writing with my laptop, a couch which was half price because it is part of a group and it was sitting there so lonely. We also picked up a coordinating armless side chair which I adore and E is about 80% on. Her 20% not loving it is because it is armless, but it is an oversized chair, so she conceded. We still have some more pieces we are hoping to get there, and Michelle, our Storehouse clearance girl, will be on the lookout for us. I think two side tables matching our bed and a leather chair or two and some stools for the kitchen island round out our current list.

While we were out shopping we went into DSW which is also in the same parking lot. Actually, we went in there first. E was very disciplined and just got a new pair of running shoes. I got three new pair of shoes but they all validate the one in one out closet rule, so I am purging three pair of shoes today, too.

I got a pair of brown slides with about an inch and a half platform sole and I think they are Minnetonka. The brand means nothing because they felt like butter on my feet as I slid them on. I also got a pair of black slides from Duck Head, slightly less sole, equally comfortable. The final score is a pair of Steve Madden black eather flats. Very flat, very casual loafer like, and slipper feeling. Definitely, I will be going back for the same Steve Madden shoe in brown after the first of the month.

Time to do the furniture dance.

Friday, January 21, 2005

Family communication

My family is such a group of non-communicaters.

Last Sunday going into church, my mom fell and broke her hip. On Wednesday she had hip replacement surgery. She will be in the hospital at least until Monday, and then transferred to a rehab facility where her insurance keeps her for 20 days and possibly longer if needed.

On Thursday I get a call from my aunt.

Aunt P: Are you at work?
Me: No
(Small silence)
Me: I'm sitting down now, just tell me.
Aunt P: Oh, it's not that bad, your mom fell and broke her hip and had hip replacement yesterday. Well she fell on Sunday. Your dad did not want you called for you to worry or think you have to rush home.
Me: Nice.
Aunt P: I decided to say fuck what he wants and call and tell you. You need to know.
Me: (smiling cause Aunt P said fuck) Thanks.

We then went on to talk a little more, and I told her I would call my mom tomorrow.
Aunt P: What's wrong with today?
Me: I am on my way pout the door to dinner.
(More silence)


I called my mom last night and talked with her for about 30 minutes. Then I decided to call my neice because I did not want here to learn about this reading here when she has a chance to get caught up. She was ever grateful, and we proceeded to catch up and discuss our endearing family dynamics.

Basically, we vowed to break the non-communicative cycle just to conclude that those behind us, her brother and my sons, are all boys and our work would be futrile because boys, like the rest of our family, just don't communicate.

We still will though. We're both new Mac iBook grrls!!

Thursday, January 20, 2005

general malaise

Feeling blah at the moment. Not blah badm just blah. Definitely time to see the doc for a physical as I have not had one in years, but I am not sure the blah is anything more than slugg day blah-ness. Last night I had a chill going to bed, and still this morning was feeling it and throughout the day, though I know it was mid seventies today and felt warm. Factor in, too, that I am just past Aunt Flo, so my iron is likely lower than normal. I am definitely feeling low ironish. Too bad I don't tolerate the iron pills all that well. If I did I would be taking them.
Blech, even.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

can she even spell?

So that last entry has so many typos, I thought it might be too great an effort to edit it.

Also, I forgot to mention, all the formatting is gone, so everything I have transferred will eventually need to be reformatted.


I will focus on being glad the text is not lost.

And, someone anonymous loves me. Isn't it grand??!??

Monday, January 17, 2005

file transfers

154 emails later, and all my files from my dead laptop are now at lease on my iBook as text in an email. It was sucky that I could not read them off the disc I had them saved on, but at least the text is not lost. The chore now will be to get them converted into files again from the emails and then getting them backed up in the new format.

Oh, and then to get more recent stuff workable, and then to be actually working again. On new stuff.

I have a 3o day free trial of MS Office for Mac which basically gives me Word. I am not sure if i should even be using it, though from what I can understand from the licensing agreement, the files created or altered while using the free trial will still be accessible after the free trial if I elect to decline purchase. I wonder how much it is.

Sunday, January 16, 2005

We did a little shopping today...

Breakfast this morning was at Empire Cafe. We both had the Italian toast and chai lattes. Tres. Yumm.

The plan was to then go to the Galleria, but we were out and about earlier that intended and it was too early to go to the mall. The alternative was to go to Borders books as that was the closest place to go kick back and browse.

E got a few reference books for work, and I got a help book for my Mac. I also discovered a new magazine called Cloth Paper Scissors: collage, mixed media, artistic discovery. I would link to it, but there seems to be a tool bar missing and maybe that is just a mac thing i need to get used to.

We then came home for a while and driften into slugg mode, only to go back out again this afternoon. We went to Costco to pick up a few things and then over to the Galleria to see what the Apple store had for cases. They had a lovely small case which is only slightly bigger than my iBook. It has a padded shoulder strap so I can use it solo, but it is small enough to slide into my backpack or purse.

From there we hit Whole foods and picked up some things for dinner. I just made some pork tenderloin and some shrimp, and supplemented that with some soup and carrots.

The dvds I got for xmas are as follows:

Sarah McLachlan Afterglow Live
Go Fish
Saturday Night Live: the best of Eddie Murphy
Tipping The Velvet
Kissing Jessica Stein
The Hunger
High Art

Time to get back to the help book.

Feliz Navidad

For those of you not in the know, today is xmas!

E and I decided to defer gifting until after our budget opened up a lttle. That was last Monday, so this weekend, logically, is xmas. Last night was xmas eve and we opened gifts.

Let me share some of the loot(in no particular order and not a complete list):

Crossroads cd(promo cd from vh1 and a MAJOR SCORE!)
Sarah McLachlan Afterglow live dvd which we promptly watched
Numerous lesbo dvds which I am too lazy to get to list
Buddhist temple statuary for my altar maybe
Barefoot Contessa Paris cookbook (can you believe E bought me a cookbook??)
beaded stitched journal (a journal!!!)
Rachel Ray $40 a day book
Ginger perfume from Origins
other misc stuff

I will take some pics maybe to post as I remember to do so.

When we go to Slick Willie's to shoot pool, I usually drop a fiver into the jukebox so we can listen to music we like and not the woe is me boy crap often played there. I always do a ritual cleansing of the juke box and start off with the grrly holy trinity, You Oughtta KNow,Edge of Seventeen, and Bring MeSome Water.

Bring Me Some Water is a live duet by Melissa Etheridge and Joan Osborne off the Crossroads cd. Just awesome. Now we can lesten to it anywhere!!

We are heading out to xmas breakfast at Empire Cafe where I am having the Italian toast. Yumm. Then I might ask we go to the Galleria and the Apple store to see if they have a slim case for the iBook that I like. If not, it's over to the Container Store for the one I saw there.

Happy Holidays!!

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Mac attack

So, I am liking it...

From offline notes I made yesterday:
"Sucky that you have to be a tmobile wireless customer to use the hot spot available at starbucks...major disappointment, but i can at least still sit here and work...maybe get more work done without being able to be online."

I had asked at Starbucks about wireless connection availability and the dude said they had access. In retrospect, i realize i should have asked if they offered *FREE* wireless. They don't.

As a Tmobile hotspot, they offer a are a Tmobile subscriber. Oh, at the monthly fee of $29.99, or a pay as you go with a $6 minimum for the first hour and then .10 a minute thereafter.

Someone is on crack. I think I will just stay with the other cafes that offer *FREE* wireless access. The places I prefer are not convenient to work, but there is a Panera Bread just down the street which will work fine for me.

Monday, January 10, 2005

Up and running...err...walking...

Many things still to figure out, but I am up and running on my new Apple G4 iBook. E had to hook up the wireless router again and she is such a babe for doing so. Otherwise I might have asked Beth over tomorrow for lunch.Not only am I wireless, but the desktop is still working proerly. My own personal IT babe. I am so blessed.


Oh, and I need to get used to a tighter laptop keyboard again, hence the caps above.

One final thing, the data disc I have all my old laptop files backed up on is looking like gibberish, but I already know a work around. I suppose I need to get Word for Mac eventually.

Sunday, January 09, 2005


Just as I thought might happen, I left the meditation teaching after the morning session. I really was liking it and I did want to stay for the afternoon. I just know myself too well. I was feeling a little overwhelmed by all the info and the presence. It really was something divine. I had the feeling that if I had stayed for the afternoon that it would be a case of too much information. I spoke to the Rinpoche's translator and told her to convey my thanks and assurance that I intended no disrespect, but that I felt I had a digestible amount to wrap my mind around and that I would not be returning after lunch.

I then met E at home and we went to the Galleria to check out the Apple store. If anything else is predictable, I will have a 12 inch G4 iBook up and running by this time tomorrow.

No expectations = no disappointments. Time to make some real mac-n-cheese.

Inhale the scent of good quality incense...

I am off to a meditation teaching session at a new(to me) place, Lotus Works Center. The teaching is given by Khentrul Lodro Thaye Rinpoche and is titled "The key points of the meditation that gives rise to authentic enlightened intention and sublime knowing".

It might be formal. It might be not. My mind is open. The actual teaching is 10-12 then there is a break for lunch until 2 and a meditation session followed by Q&A from 2-5. I am personally committed to the 10-12 portion and will then decide if I am going to return after lunch.

There is always shopping meditation waiting. I want to go preview the iBook I might be getting tomorrow.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Good freakin morning

I was awake 15 minutes ago. Just awake. Actually, I think I was awake nearly an hour ao but did not get out of bed until 15 minutes ago. It is more new job schedule weirdness. I worked 2-9 last night and when E called me at 1ish to tell me she tried calling me at work only to be told I was not there, I realized this was the first Friday night I had been scheduled since going back to work more than a year ago.

At about 7:30 last night I felt cheated, beecause in reality, I should have been at the pool hall having a beer or two. Let's just add insult to injury and go in to work this morning from 8-2. At least I have 2 days off before I have to work 5 days in a row. My body will be in full on revold after that. Right up to xmas eve.

Yes, I said xmas eve. That is next Saturday, the logic being that xmas is Sunday, January 16th. We decided to postpone gifting until the budget opened up a little after vacation recovery. That happens on Monday, and I then get to fall into the rush of trying to xmas shop for she who is dearest and sweetest around my 5 days of working. Before work here. After work there. On my lunch break. I am going to love it.

I also proposed hanging xmas lights on the outside of the house next Friday for the weekend. We'll see.

In addition to this, Spanish class begins on Monday, too. I am ripping the cds right now. Trying to anyway.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

So someone at JCP is a dumbshit

Don't you just love it when your company decides to outsource the HR department so that nobody really knows what is going on or how to remedy a pay issue? One would think that 5 years later, someone would understand the system. Is that not a reasonable presumption? To date they owe me about $430 in back pay from the 18th of December when I switched positions. Somehow the coding was not done properly for the switch. The funny thing is, it is not really a strain for me at the moment, and I will like it when I finally get the adjusted check, hopefully next payday, but it is irritating as all hell that noone seems to know the answer to remedy the error. Bob is on it and I have faith that he is really on it, nt just "on it" in a check's-in-the-mail sort of way. Of course, he made the error in the first place.

Should I be asking for interest?

Saturday, January 01, 2005

Feliz Año Nuevo

It's 2005! That means my baby ( my oldest, that is) is going to be 20 in 13 days. I really did not have a problem turning 40 last year, but my baby turning 20 really knocks it home. That, and the book I bought on a recent book whoring outing with CJ, Lesbians at Midlife: The Creative Transition. It is an anthology of lesbians 40-60 and it is on the 'to read' shelf at the bottom of the pile. I think I might change my recently read list to a to read list. But just maybe.

Last night we went to Slick Willie's to shoot pool and entertain the young hetero's. It was Friday night and that's what we generally do on Friday night. A little ol' thing like NYE is not going to get in our way. Our regular grrl was working and I will be damned if I am ever going to remember her name. She has been our bargrrl for the better part of 2004. I always want to say Stephanie, but I am pretty sure that just isn't right. Most nights she does have a name tag on, but not last night, so 'Hey' was all she got.

Before SW we ate at Mo Mong, one of my favorites for sure. I really could eat there several times a week. Last night I had the Kyoto noodles with chicken. I decided then and there it was time to go buy some udon noodles and experiment with them at home. Udon noodles are a lot like the noodles in Franco American canned macaroni and cheese. You know you ate it when you were a kid. It is right up there with canned ravioli (or pasta squares as my 3 yr old nephew insists...may you never call them ravioli in his presence and witness him turning blue) and my favorite guilty pleasure, Spaghettios with meat balls.

E had Ga Luc Lac, another favorite, and we split the mango spring rolls of course.

Before MM, I took a nap. I was up and wide awake at 1:37am and then went to work 8-3. Right around 1 in the afternoon I began to notice I was miskeying every transaction I rang into the register. Not a good thing for a commission department. E met me at JCP at 3 and we shopped a little. Jeans and a few shirts made it home and a set of 5 pieces of luggage wgich retails at $250, was on sale at 70% off and with my discount we nabbed for $62 and some change. Deep red. Look for us at an airport near you.

We were home right around 11 last night, and right after midnight we hit the sack to get right to work on last year's resolution number 2. That was E's resolve to have sex daily. I think we finished off last year at about 330some days, but we know we can do better!! We are 1/1 for the new year!