formerly Diane's Addled Ramblings... the ramblings are still addled, just like before, and the URL is still the same...
it's just the title at the top of the page that's new

Sunday, August 31, 2008

This One's Gay...

I'm watching television right now and I just burst out laughing... had to share.

There's a new show coming on this fall called 'The Mentalist' with Simon Baker (who is just so yummy). I'm not sure exactly what the show's about but it seems Baker's character (who works in law enforcement, I think) is sometimes mistaken for a psychic because he seems to know things about people he shouldn't know... turns out he's just incredibly observant. So, the scene I just saw was him in the morgue with a bunch of other (live) people and several corpses all lined up on tables. He points to one male body and says, "This one's gay." Everyone turns and looks at him questioningly, clearly wondering how he could possibly know that from a quick glance at the body. He points to the dead man's feet and says, "Pedicure."

Now that's not particularly funny. What IS funny, however, is that the other day Ryan says to me, "Oh, Mama, I forgot to tell you this. When I was in Alabama with Daddy and Tracy, Daddy got a pedicure!!" I laughed pretty hard when she told me. I laughed even harder tonight. God, I so hope Rob watches that show!

Saturday, August 30, 2008

What's the Big Deal?

My car is less-than-clean, I admit. It’s almost always less-than-clean. OK, some days it’s downright filthy. OK, OK, most days it’s downright filthy. But I don't see the big deal... cleaning it just isn't that important to me. On a daily basis I cart around a 9-year-old (who thinks of the car as her personal crap depository… it’s how she keeps her room tidy), a very (very) hairy dog (who is often wet and muddy), and myself (who needs a bunch of books and magazines and, apparently, at least one weeks’ worth of recycling on hand at any given time). I take it camping in the woods and on long road trips and I have never prohibited eating or drinking in it. In fact, Rob once told me that if he found another french fry in my car, he’d divorce me. Guess I should have passed on that last trip to McDonalds, huh?

Although I don’t care much about my car being dirty, it seems to bother other people besides Rob (that it bothers him is just a little treat for me). Last year, when my friend Todd visited from London, the first thing he said when he got into the car was, “It smells like dog in here.” Yeah. Bite me. Even Hugh, who never criticizes me (to my face) commented several times about how I might want to clean out my car. And you, lovely Hugh, can bite me, too.

Recently, my dirty car actually served me well. I got pulled over for speeding and when the cop asked me if I knew why he’d stopped me, I said, “My car’s too dirty?” He cracked up. I didn’t get a ticket that day. You don't have to bite me, Mr. Cute Policeman (unless you want to, of course).

So today I get to the park for my work out. I’m still sitting in the car, waiting for the song on the radio to finish when this little kid gets out of the car next to me and peers in the window. Then he yells, “Wow, Mama! This lady’s car is a MESS!”

Hey kid... bite me! And after you do, I’m going to clean out my car. Geez-us.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Like Mother, Like Daughter

I was transported back 22 years this afternoon, while driving Ryan home from after-school. I was suddenly back at Radford, with my roommate Tracey, singing a Genesis song at the top of my lungs when, in the middle of the song, Tracey turned the radio down...

T: What did you just say?
Me: Huh? What? I was singing the song.
T: No, I don’t think you were.
Me: Yes I was.
T: What are the words to the chorus?
Me (out of tune): “She seems to have that physical attraction...”
T (snorting and laughing rudely): Oh. My. God. You’re retarded.
Me: What? Those aren’t the words?!
T: No, moron. It's, “She seems to have that invisible touch, yeah...”
Me: Seriously? Are you sure?
T (still laughing rudely): Oh. My. God.

So, the reason I was transported back 22 years to one of my many embarrassing moments from that period is that Ryan was singing along (loudly) to the radio… the song was “I Hope You Dance” by one of those country singer ladies...

Me (turning the radio down): What did you just say?
R: What? I was singing the song.
Me: I know... but what did you actually SAY? The “give faith” part...
R: You know, “...give faith for finding cheese.” I don’t get it, though.
Me (snorting): Oh. My. God. You are JUST like me!
R: What? Those aren’t the words?
Me: Nope. It’s “... give faith a fighting chance”!
R: Oh. Yeah. That’s makes a lot more sense, doesn’t it?

Like mother, like daughter... God help her!

Men are Such... Men

I saw something hysterically funny this morning and I had to share...

I was sitting at a stoplight at the intersection of Mason and West Market today... it's a fairly busy thoroughfare and there was a good bit of traffic. As I was waiting, a girl (a very pretty girl) came jogging down West Market and crossed over Mason street, continuing on her way to the Court Square area of downtown. As she crossed the intersection, a man (a very not-pretty man) was jogging down Mason Street and very obviously noticed her. He kept watching her as he crossed West Market... and kept watching her... and kept watching her... until he ran SMACK into the big pole that holds up the traffic light. I nearly wet my pants. The construction guys on the corner (who were also watching the pretty girl) gave him a cheer, and he looked rather sheepish (and in pain) as he continued on his way, rubbing his head. Men.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Humming Like a... What?!

OK, this is my last post for today. As some of you know, my laptop has been in the shop for a week because it contracted pneumonia (ever so much worse than a plain old virus). It's been very, very trying for me and, apparently, for the guy at the computer service place, too, as he's been sounding more and more frustrated every day that it's taken him a week to do a job he's only getting paid $75 for. He's got an accent that I'm pegging as eastern European, though he's obviously been in the US a long time (he's been in business here for 20+ years). It's clear, however, that English was not his first language. He called me a few minutes ago to tell my computer is (FINALLY) ready... he said (very proudly, too, I might add), "I've got it up and humming like a horse!" Like a... horse? Maybe he learned English from Mr. Ed? Dunno... but as long as 'humming like a horse' means it's (FINALLY) working, I don't give a crap!

Heil George!

I just read an article about George Steinbrenner's security staff ejecting a paying fan from Yankees Stadium because he left his seat to go to the bathroom during the singing of 'God Bless America'. Apparently, Steinbrenner implemented an order some time ago that everyone in the stadium (who PAID to be there, mind you) has to stand still and silent during the singing of the 'National Anthem' and 'God Bless America' (it seems he even had chains installed on the end of each row of seats to keep people in place!) or his Storm Troopers... sorry, I mean his security staff... could remove them from the game.

OK... is it just me, or does this sound Hitleresque to anyone else out there? Now, I'll admit that I'm not the most nationalistic person on the planet, which is shocking, really, given that I grew up in such a right-wing, patriotic house... hell, maybe that's the reason I feel the way I do (or don't)... I dunno. I'm certainly not an America-hater, though. I'm very appreciative of the freedoms I'm afforded by living here and I'm extremely appreciative and respectful of how hard-won most of those freedoms were. As such, I have great respect for the military (though not their current leader) and when our government or the American public provides support elsewhere in the world, or when Americans pull together to solve a crisis here at home, I do feel a sense of pride. I won't say that I'm necessarily proud to have grown up here, as I didn't have any say in the matter (and had the Australian or New Zealand government accepted our family's applications for entry back in the 60's, I very possibly would have grown up in the Southern Hemisphere), and I could move away from here without feeling like I'm betraying anyone or anything. I think most countries and governments have their fair share of positives and negatives, and like many Americans (far more patriotic than myself), I'm certainly not proud of some of things our government has done (here and abroad), and I have absolutely zero respect for the current administration (again, like many, many Americans... which, just to clarify, doesn't make them un-patriotic).

So, as I say, I'm not the most nationalistic person and I actually DO tend to stand respectfully for the 'National Anthem', but I think it's un-American (and indeed, Hitleresque) for someone to tell me I MUST do it, especially in a venue I paid money to be in! Showing respect under force is not respect at all, is it? It's compliance... it's bowing to coercion and intimidation. Do we no longer have the right to disagree with the powers that be? What about the right to choose for ourselves whom and what we respect? What happened to an American's right to dissent? And bear in mind, I'm not talking about a man standing on his seat, waving his arms and screaming, "America Sucks! All Americans should die!" I'm talking about a man who had to pee, and chose the period of time when the bathrooms would be empty to go so he wouldn't miss any of the baseball game HE PAID TO SEE (and if you've ever been in the bathroom of a large stadium during any sort of break in the action, you know exactly why he left his seat when he did). I've no idea what side of the political fence this poor guy sits on; I don't know whether he loves or hates his country; whether he's a Christian or an Athiest; whether he flies an American flag or burns them every chance he gets. But in the end, does it really matter? Does anyone have the right to force his beliefs on others? George Steinbrenner thinks so. I say thank God he's not in politics. But I'd bet that if he was, there'd be a few of us out there, shouting "Heil George!"

Word of the Day...

PESTIFEROUS \pes-TIF-uh-ruhs\, adjective:
1. Bearing or bringing disease.
2. Infected with or contaminated by a pestilential disease.
3. Morally evil or dangerous to society; pernicious.
4. Bothersome; troublesome; annoying.

I consider people who don't pick up their dog's poo at the park to be of pestiferous personality and demeanor. (See 'Random Thought' posting below...)

Random Thought...

People who don't pick up their dog's poo at the park SUCK.

OK, so this thought was actually not so random... it came to me very un-randomly... while I was very pointedly, and pissed-offedly (yes, that's a word... I just declared it one), cleaning poo off my shoe... again!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Whoo Hoo!

It's the first day of school (whoo hoo!!) so I'm havin' a party! Come on by, do my happy dance with me, and sing along to my first-day-of-school song... it goes something like this...

It's the first day of school, whoo hoo!
I'm so friggin' happy, whoo hoo!
Ryan's gone for the day,
Diane's gonna play!
It's the first day of school, whoo hoo!

It's the first day of school, whoo hoo!
So glad I'm not a teacher, whoo hoo!
Summer's FINALLY passed,
It's quiet at LAST!
It's the first day of school, whoo hoo!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Just One Second Later...

I almost killed a kid yesterday. He rode his bicycle at breakneck speed into the intersection I was driving through on my way to Target to pick up dog food. About Ryan's age, he was clad in only a pair of shorts - no shoes, no helmet - and a 'deer caught in the headlights' look. I slammed on my brakes HARD and though I know my tires were no longer moving, my car was still being propelled forward by sheer momentum... it stopped a mere 6 inches from his sturdy little-boy body perched on his green mountain bike. He waved and hollered "I'm sorry" twice before continuing on his way. I had to pull over, to catch my breath and wait for my heart's rhythm to return to normal. I can't remember ever being so frightened. A hundred things ran through my head -- all the what if's... what if I'd been just one second later entering the intersection? What if I'd been looking down at the radio or adjusting the AC or looking in my rear view mirror? What if I hadn't had my brakes replaced recently? What if I'd been tired or my reflexes weren't so good? None of the scenarios my mind fabricated were positive... every one of them resulted in him being terribly (or fatally) injured. It didn't matter that it wouldn't have been my fault... I wasn't speeding; I was crossing the intersection at a green light; he didn't stop or look before he barrelled in front of me; he wasn't wearing any of the protective gear required by law (or common sense). All that would have mattered was that I hit a child with my car. My life as I know it would have been over. That's the sort of thing you don't move past, no matter how it happens or how it turns out. Luckily, I didn't have to move past it. I just had to take a deep breath and thank the Universe that everything fell into place so that little boy could make it, unharmed, to his friend's house or the playground or wherever he was going (hopefully a little bit wiser, a little more wary of intersections, and a lot more respectful of red lights). And after another deep breath, I thanked the Universe that all my problems and frustrations and the annoyances that plague this daily mess we call 'life' pale in comparison to what I COULD have had to deal with, had I been just one second later.

Friday, August 22, 2008

It's Me Again!

Hello All… I’m back to blogging after what seems like forever. I had the pleasure of a somewhat unexpected visit from my friend Hugh from London and we spent two weeks wandering about Washington and ‘Pigsknuckle’ (Hugh’s name for H’burg).

Hugh works in the film industry and given that the SAG strike is on at the moment, there’s not much work to be had. He was also sitting on a bunch of dollars he made on a film eons ago and since they’re worth nothing in the UK, he figured he’d rather spend them here. And spend them we did! We saw pretty much everything there was to see – every memorial and monument in Washington (and a few I didn’t even know existed), museums I’d never set foot in, and 'Jerry Springer – The Opera'; we ate sushi and steak and buckets o’food from a huge buffet; we drank (a lot); we walked about 5 or 6 hours a day, wore out a couple of pairs of shoes, and saw beautiful buildings and architecture, street beggars, and pretty much the entire gay population of DC. Back here, we saw caverns and battlefields and a president’s home; we went to the county fair (where Hugh saw a tractor pull with my neighbor, Wes… I didn’t need that little dose of ‘Americana’); we had a fire in the firepit outside and got eaten by mosquitoes; and we got all pruney after 7 hours at the water park. Ryan and Hugh picked on each other unmercifully, which was funny (especially when Hugh got her back by pouring water over her head while she waited in line for a ride at the fair). Sundance loved him (even though he called him ‘pathetic’ and ‘not a proper dog’ simply because he won’t fetch!). My mom asked him to stay another month after he cooked dinner (he’s a good cook). I told him I’ve never, ever spent 2 solid weeks with anyone (except Ryan when she was little)… I was amazed that I didn’t want to kick him even once! I think that’s because we’re not dating, though… had we been dating, I’m sure I would have felt the urge to kick him a few times. So, all in all, it was a good 2 weeks!

Hope yours was as good! Oh, new pictures to the left and down… enjoy! Diane…XO

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

So Sad...

I logged in this morning to check email and Baldy's Blog, as I do every morning, and was so sad to see that Adrian Sudbury died early this morning. I hope some of you checked out his blog and, like me, were touched by what a remarkable man he was. I didn't know him personally but I'll miss him, as will many, many others. If there's a Heaven, I'm sure he's there now, enjoying a pint... so... Cheers, Adrian!

I've been a blog slacker lately, I know, but I've had company for 2 weeks. I'll update and post some new photos at the end of the week. Hope you're all well and happy... speak soon!

Diane... XO

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Tag, You're It!

I was ‘tagged’ today by a bloggy friend, which means I have to relay 7 random/weird facts about myself in my blog and then tag 7 other people to do the same. I don’t really have 7 other bloggy friends, as I haven’t been doing it that long, so I challenge all of you to tell me 7 random/weird facts about you. And since most of you seem to have an aversion to commenting here, but no problem telling me via email what you think of my little missives, feel free to drop me a note that way if you'd rather… I look forward to reading them! OK, here goes…

1. I have a death fear of fowl… chickens, geese, and especially turkeys (UGH!). You know those news specials they do around Thanksgiving, where the reporter has to stand in the middle of a turkey farm? They are why I never became a reporter.

2. I have… ummm… issues… with public restrooms (actually, with any restroom that’s not in my own house). I can pee in them, but that’s about it. I picked my college, not for academics or social programs, but because they had a bathroom between every two rooms, so I’d never have to share a hall bathroom with 75 other girls. Pathetic, huh? Even Ryan thinks so... but she can poop anywhere... Target, the grocery store, restaurants... anywhere. I wish!

3. I don’t like Christmas. I really don’t… the stress of giving the perfect gift, the ‘spirit of giving’ that goes away on December 26th, nothing but Christmas carols on the radio from the day after Thanksgiving to the New Year, etc. Years ago, my employees gave me a mug for Christmas that said “Bah Humshit”. It was my favorite gift… until it shattered when I dropped it... sigh.

4. I simply cannot go to bed without brushing my teeth. Unless I’m drunk. Then I can go to bed without doing pretty much anything.

5. I think Playboy is a great magazine (and yes, I know I just risked my membership in the Women’s Club). Don’t get me wrong, I hate the pictures of the neckit girls (that’s Elkton-speak), as they make me feel seriously inferior, but I love the articles and interviews. I’m always happy when I meet a guy who reads it (because no, I won’t go buy one for myself).

6. I don’t like coffee (yuck) but I love coffee-flavored things (ice cream, candy, etc. Yum).

7. When I was little, I was incredibly shy. I wouldn’t even speak in public and people thought I was deaf like my brother. But yeah, I SO got over it.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Conversation with a McDonalds Employee

(Because I was on the road, starving, and it was the first place I came to in Podunkville, USA...)

McDummy: Hi, can I help you?
Me: Yes, can I get a Quarter Pounder and a medium Diet Coke, please?
McDummy: Would you like to make that a meal?
Me: No thanks. Just the burger and drink.
McDummy: But it’s cheaper. Quarter Pounder meals are the special this week.
Me: But I don’t want the fries.
McDummy: But it’s cheaper.
Me: But I don’t want the fries.
McDummy: But it’s cheaper.
Me: Fine. Make it a meal.

I pay and wait for a (year) few minutes. She puts my burger on the tray and goes to get the fries…

Me: Just keep the fries. I don’t want them.
McDummy: But you paid for them.
Me: But I don’t want them.
McDummy: But you paid for them.
Me: I only paid for them because it was cheaper. I don’t want them.
McDummy: I have to give them to you.
Me: But I don’t want them. I won’t eat them.
McDummy: But you paid for them.
Me: Fine. Give me the fries.

I turn to the guy behind me, who looks like he’s about to crap himself from holding in the laughter.

Me: Do you want my fries?
Guy: Sure, I’ll take them.

I hand them to him as he steps up to the register.

McDummy: Can I help you?
Guy: Yeah, can I get a Quarter Pounder with cheese and a large Coke?
McDummy: Would you like to make that a meal?

Sunday, August 3, 2008

People... People Who Need People...

My friend Todd and I were talking the other day about the fact that our relationship began via the internet… we corresponded for about six months before we met face-to-face (because he lives in London) and we’ve been terribly close ever since. I maintain that had we met in person first, we wouldn’t be so close, as emailing someone who doesn’t really know you is sort of like therapy… you let out your true feelings and thoughts, where you might not in person (for fear of being judged or laughed at or slapped upside the head). Todd can be a tad annoying at times in person (oh, don’t look so aghast, you… you know it’s true) and I’m not sure I would have tried hard to get past the persona he shows the world… but the person he let me see via his words is someone I love and respect and expect to be a part of my life forever. I’ve been incredibly lucky on the whole online relationship front, really… I’ve met some of the people dearest to me that way. Todd thinks that’s unusual… I don’t really, not given the level of importance now placed on the internet by most of us. And I think that when two people who communicate well in writing connect, and if they have things in common (especially their core values and senses of humor), a friendship (or more) is bound to develop. Right Levi? ;) The internet gives us the ability to cross boundaries we wouldn’t be able to cross otherwise… and that’s an amazing thing. I don’t think that internet connections should replace the flesh-and-blood connections in our lives… but I think it’s a good way to make even more ‘real’ connections than you might otherwise, in a world that is so very big, and so very small, all at the same time.

I’ve just spent the last half hour crying my eyes out while reading about one of my favorite connections. I’ve mentioned his blog to you all before… ‘Baldy’s Blog’ (link to the left), which belongs to Adrian Sudbury, a young guy who lives in England and has chronicled his experience with cancer online. I don’t know Adrian personally, and though I’ve sent my well-wishes in response to several of his postings, I’ve never carried on a conversation with him. Neither have most of the hundreds upon hundreds (maybe even thousands) of people he touches every day, all over the world, with his words. But still, we ‘know’ him. He is an amazing man… when diagnosed with cancer, he decided not to just sit back and take it; not even to simply fight the disease… he decided to make what time he had left as productive as it could be and started off on a campaign to make the facts about bone marrow donation known in the UK, especially to young people still in school. He’s gained national attention and the campaign has garnered massive support from all sorts of people including politicians of the highest rank.

I spent this morning crying because Adrian is dying… his doctors have told him he only has a few weeks left. He’s taking care of his final good-byes and spending time with his family and friends. What is so amazing to me is the sheer number of people who love and admire this man… people who have never met him and never will. They come from all walks of life and every corner of the planet… they send him their love and their prayers and their well-wishes every day… they, like me, check in on him first thing in the morning and breathe a sigh of relief when he’s posted and he sounds good… and they sigh in sadness when there’s a note that describes a particularly awful or painful day. He has brought people together in a way we sometimes forget is possible because we are so busy taking care of the stuff that makes up our lives. Reading the responses to his posts has given me hope in and for a world that sometimes seems hopeless. It makes me remember that people are inherently good and that most of us really do care about others. It makes me remember that in the grand scheme of things, my problems are petty and far from insurmountable, and that I just need to get over my damned self sometimes. And it makes me very happy to be a part of a global community – one connected by the worldwide web.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Happy Birthday, Ry!

It is August 2nd… Ryan’s birthday! She’s not here with me, for the first time ever on her birthday, as she’s staying an extra couple of days with her dad. I’m happy she’s having a good time but I’m missing her terribly and have been thinking of her non-stop all day. Exactly 9 years ago this evening, I was holding my 7lb, 15oz wonder… I was tired, happy, a little nervous, and seriously despising the Breastapo (a.k.a. the lactation specialists). We’ve come a long way, lack of breast milk notwithstanding, and I’m so proud of child she is and the young woman she’s well on her way to becoming. She’s not the child I expected she would be, but that might just be a good thing, as she’s exceptional in so many ways I never dreamed of. I just wish she didn’t talk so damned much! But I love her just the same, mouth and all ;). So, here’s to you, Pud! Happy, happy, HAPPY Birthday! XOXO