Thursday, April 26, 2012

I am a little early...

It is a little after 2PM... I am at "A Real Bookstore" (that is the name of the bookstore) and at about 7PM, The Bloggess will be here.  So, yeah, I may be a little early.  BUT, they start handing out the wristbands that you have to have to get your book signed at 5PM, so I guess I am just "prepared" and not freakishly early.  When I picked up my book, they asked me if I was coming back later. No... I am staying right here. Because I am not going to take even the remotest chance that this will somehow NOT happen.   It is not often that I get the chance to meet someone I have dreamed of meeting. So I am crazy excited for the chance to meet Jenny.  AND... AND... I might also get to meet Lisa, who will be here with a penguin.  I don't have a penguin, but I do have a necklace that I got for Jenny before I found out that she hates jewelry (yeah, I died a little inside when I read that in her blog a couple days ago, but I am hoping that somehow the particular necklace I have will meet with her approval. I mean, I don't expect her to wear it if she hates jewelry, but maybe it will make a nice accessory for Juanita.  Yes, accessorizing your weasel can be important...and difficult. Because there is a bit of an anti-weasel sentiment in retail.... or at least there was before Jenny came along.

It's been a bit of an emotional week and I am worried that I am going to make an ass of myself in front of Jenny and/or Lisa because I don't do well with social situations. Plus, there is already someone in the blogosphere that thinks I am some sort of dangerous psychopath.  And the worst part of that is that I have no clue why the person came to that conclusion. I'm trying to not dwell on it, but it's hard sometimes because it makes you start second guessing EVERYTHING you do. 

I mean, I do realize that I have always been "weird" and that when I worked in residential facilities for adults with mental illnesses, the counselors would always tease me that they felt that having me around was a bit like having an inmate running the asylum... partially because of my innate strangeness and partially because I often had really good insights on what was really going on with some of the residents (because I dealt with them as PEOPLE and not as case studies).  Apparently when you are in "the system" you eventually get tired of everyone you encounter being on a mission to "fix" you when sometimes what you really want is for someone to just LISTEN to you.  And since I was just an Administrative Assistant who took care of the business part of things and not a therapist of any sort, the clients actually TALKED to me.  But not like client-to-therapist but more like someone remembering what it was like to have a conversation with people that didn't involve any effort to change you.  I wonder sometimes if "the system" might work better if people were treated more like PEOPLE and less like broken things that needed repairing. (And that, my friends, is why I am not in management or in the mental health field).  I was once told by a co-worker at one of the residential facilities that I would eventually stop caring about the residents.   I never wanted to get to that point and knew that if I did, that was the day I should get out of the field.

This post has gotten really long and i still have several hours to go before Jenny will be here.  But I'll wrap up this post and write another after the evening is over. I'm sure it will be magical.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

S/he who is forewarned...

The Blogosphere is a magnificent and wonderous place.  It opens up new venues for friendships that might not exist without it. You can reach out and "meet" people all over the world.  But, because subtle things cannot be conveyed perfectly in a written medium, sometimes you may find that you have unintentionally gotten on someone's shit list. 

Sometimes, too, you write something that might be provocative and there are people who won't like what you have to say and they will either stop reading your blog or maybe make a snarky comment on your blog.  I've seen it happen.  Sometimes those relationships can be repaired. Other times they can't.

In the 90's, back before the current incarnation of the Internet, there were BBS's. You tended to get local people from these groups meeting each other. I was an idiot at a New Year's Eve party and managed to pretty much, in one fell swoop, cut my social circle down to pretty much nothing.  I'd like to think I am older and wiser now, but I still tend to be somewhat socially inept.  Part of it comes from circumstances growing up, part of it is just my personality.  I tend to be one of those people that people don't feel "middle-of-the-road" about... they either adore me or loathe me.

Still, there are times when I think I've "clicked" with someone and then something happens that I don't quite "get" and I encounter a cold shoulder.  And I'm never quite sure how to approach it. Do I just walk away without trying to figure things out?  Do I ask and risk getting told "you know what you did" when I honestly DON'T know what I did?  Do I ask a mutual friend to be an intermediary (that strikes me as  pretty juvenile, actually). 

There's really no "point" to this whole thing... I'm musing on a situation/situations and my inability to find "the right thing" to do.

Unrelated...The Center for Biological Diversity sent me a package.  They have a program that focuses on the environmental impact of overpopulation and they distribute over 100,000 condoms. Guess what was in my package?  Nowhere near 100,000 condoms, but a bunch of condoms. And I am hoping that I will get around to putting up the giveaway info this weekend.  I am hoping that no one is offended by a condom giveaway.  If you are offended, I hope you will just skip those posts and come back again another time.  I'm here to make friends and discover a world outside of my little corner of it.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Catting Around

Hey all you internetz peoples. I am Crystal. I am a cat. Momma left her computer logged in tonight when she went to bed. Sometimes she forgets to log off. Most of the time I look at food when she is sleeping. Sometimes I get on Facebooks. I have my own Facebooks page.  With my beeyutiful picture on it and everythings.

But also, there was this cat Dumbcat of a blog place called Lucys Football (which sounds dangerous cause feets is dangerous cuz they can step on your tailz and that is not a good feeling). And that Dumbcat blogged the other day and I wonder if Dumbcat is his real name or if he is using a special name so the Internetz does not catnap him. Cuz he is scared of peeplez. I am not afraid of peeplez.  They make good beds. And chairs.Also bathtubs (cat bathtubs anyways, because we do not use all the water)  Plus sometimes they have food. Food they will share with you. Anyhow, I do not think Dumbcat is a nice name for a cat because my brother is not too bright but I don't think Momma and Daddy would name him Dumbcat.  They do call us silly sometimes but I try to not be offended because they do weird stuff all the time.  But Momma says that Dumbcats mom is a nice lady who would probably pet me and maybe sneak me snacks so I will go with the theory that she just gave Dumbcat an internet name so he doesn't get all catnapped.  

Well,  I suppose I should go looking for pictures of fish. And food. And maybe see if I can order some new toys from the internetz. The kind with catnipz. Because I like the nip. And I like toys. If Dumbcat gets catnapped to my house, I will maybe even share my toys. But not my stinky food. The stinky food is all mine. I have Momma trained to feed it to me. I would do it myself but apparently you need thumbs to open cans and I sadly don't have any thumbs. I am trying to find someone to complain to about that. I need at least one thumb.

Goodnight internetz people. Please don't catnap Dumbcat. Unless you catnap him to my house. Thank you.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Reading, Lists and Giveaway Prep

Got something interesting in the mail today... something that will be part of a giveaway very soon.

Busy weekend ahead and I will be disappearing for part of it to read Jenny "The Bloggess" Lawson's new book "Let's Pretend This Never Happened"... because it is awesome.  I got it yesterday and really wanted to find a way to take today off to read it but I will behave and wait until I have the time (and a time when my laughing until it hurts will not wake anyone).  And, in the time it has taken me to write this I've realized that I have a ton of things I need to do tomorrow night, as well.

So, now I need to write this blog post and then I need to write a "to-do" list and one of the things on the "to-do" list is to write more blog posts, maybe even including the one that will talk about the giveaway but I don't know if maybe that is overly ambitious... because I also need to finish writing a wedding ceremony this weekend AND finish compiling a list AND all the housekeeping and other things that are on the agenda to be done.

But right now, I need to go to bed.  Even though I feel bad because I didn't get any reading done tonight.  I will make up for it tomorrow.

And I will get the giveaway information up soon. Possibly this weekend.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Terrifying Transit

A few weeks ago, I started taking DART (local public transportation) to work in the morning and home from work in the evening.  For the most part it isn't too awful and has been uneventful.

HOWEVER, then entered the bus driver I have nicknamed Flingin' Flo.  Flingin' Flo is apparently a new driver.  Judging from her skills, she got her license from a box of Lucky Charms one morning, donned a DART uniform and took to the road.

Why am I maligning the woman, you ask? Oh, let me extrapolate:

  • Consistently least 10 minutes late.  She gets a partial pass for today because there was an accident where she was supposed to turn and she had to go out of her way to get around it.
  • STOMPS on the brakes. This is part of the reason I call her Flingin' Flo... because her brake stomping causes passengers to (quite literally) be flung from their seats into the aisles and onto the floors of the bus.
  • WHIPS around turns.... This is the rest of the reason I call her Flingin' Flo... She takes corners hard and fast.
  • Road Ragey... she has used her horn more in the three trips I've taken with her than all other transit workers I've EVER ridden with combined.
  • Has her route written on a piece of paper and still consistently needs reminding from passengers where she needs to turn. Ok, I get it.. It isn't easy to keep a long bus ride straight in your head, especially the route I ride that twists and turns and doubles back upon itself.  But really, consistently having to whip across three lanes of traffic to make a turn is not winning you any friend.
  • Crash waiting to happen... every ride she comes really close to plowing into a car or cars.  Todays incident she gets a partial pass because the idiot DID pull out in front of her and should have known better.

I am actually fairly convinced, at this point, that she has a death wish and wants to take the rest of us with her. However, I have indeed lived to tell the tale, so I suppose she's not THAT bad... but it is very scary sometimes to ride with someone who seems to have so very little regard for passengers and other drivers.  Perhaps some more training. In a nice secluded training area. And something for the rage.

I'd better get to bed and rest my road-weary body.  Hope the bruising (from people being flung into my lap with great force and velocity) isn't too bad tomorrow.

Friday, April 13, 2012


Today is Friday, the 13th... I am generally not a terribly superstitious person, but I do have a touch of  paraskevidekatriaphobia which is a fear of Friday, the 13th.

Today, in general, went allright. I was likely more cautious than usual because of my paraskevidekatriaphobia  which, you know, why borrow trouble?  And the morning commute went ok.  Well, except that I REALLY needed to use a restroom when I got to the train station and there was someone ENCAMPED in said restroom. So, I toughed it out. 

I was reading on Twitter that people were getting their signed bookplate for The Bloggess's book (which I pre-ordered back in November... the book, that is, the bookplate pre-order was a while later).  I checked the mail after work and sure enough, there was my envelope from Penguin (the publishers of the book) which I eagerly opened and IT WAS EMPTY. No bookplate.  To say I was sad would be a gross understatement. And, even though I am no one of influence, I did Tweet about it...but, because I am no one of influence, it did little but made me feel marginaly better.  And so, I came home and wrote a carefully worded e-mail to the publisher asking if, by chance, they could provide me with a bookplate (and I KNOW that there were only a limited number and I am likely shit outta luck).

And so... Friday the 13th did, indeed, get it's little dig in.  I am trying to be grateful that it wasn't something worse.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Delicious Dishes

Tonight's dinner was "Crockpot Lasagne" as seen over at 'Dinosaurs Can't Eat Pizza'.

The Crockpot Lasagne is very tasty and easy to make.  There are a number of recipes on the site that I want to try and when you surf on over there, make sure to take a look in the archives.

Robyn and Nance do one recipe each week that they both try and then post their thoughts on it and they individually post recipes, too.  None of it is weird "who in the real world would ever eat that" stuff, either.  You know how recipe sites can be...  and, for instance, the crockpot lasagne recipe lists ground turkey as the meat but you could certainly use sausage or ground beef.

There will probably be few (if any) vegetarian recipes on 'Dinosaurs Can't Eat Pizza' simply because neither Robyn or Nance are vegetarians.  I don't have a problem with that, but I don't want anyone surfing over there and being disappointed that there are no vegetarian or vegan options.

When I've tried some of their other recipes, I'll follow up with a post here. Go check them out and let me know if you end up trying any recipes you find there!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Catching Up (again)

I'm not sure why I get overwhelmed by the day-to-day things that need to be done. I cannot fathom, sometimes, how people with kids and a spouse on top of a job get anything done, ever.  But perhaps they do not have a clingy, needy feline who they feel guilty about neglecting like I do.

I had today (Friday) off work and I meant it to be a productive day and it was not so productive.  I did get a few little things done but for the majority of the day I was a catbed which meant I sat in front of my computer doing whatever can be done with one's mouse-hand free because my other hand is supporting aforementioned cat lest I be torn to bits by her rear feet's pointy bits.  Having a scratched up chest is a) not attractive b) draws some unwanted attention.

A week or so ago, I had acquired part of an iSi Beverage Carbonating System... it is similar in theory to a SodaStream (which I want very much but cannot justify dropping $100 on) except that it can be used to "sparkle" all sorts of things (I am thinking of making my own Sparkling Moscato, which will be approximately $10 cheaper than buying moscato sparkled by someone else) and I received the rest of what I needed via UPS yesterday (I am on a first-name basis with the UPS guy at work, we get a LOT of packages).  I am dying to sparkle something BUT whatever is to be sparkled must be chilled SO I have some watermelon lemonade chilling in the fridge as I type this and tomorrow I will try this thing out and see if it makes watermelon lemonade into sparkling awesomeness!

But back to the catching up thing.  I feel like all I do is scoop kitty boxes and gather more trash to go out and I don't know where all the trash is coming from (other than the scoopings from the kitty boxes) but there are about 12 bags of trash that need to go out right now which is making me a little bit stabbity... BUT, here's the thing. Trash bags are heavy and unwieldy.  I live at the top of 15 very steep stairs which necessitates me holding the rail when I descend, which makes carrying heavy, unwieldy trashbags very NOT fun.  Plus, I can only carry about 2 at a time.  Which is a huge problem if there are TWELVE bags of trash because that involves navigating the stairs 6 times and after the first couple of trips up and down the stairs I feel like I want to die and I know there are some of you out there who are probably thinking that what that means is that I NEED that workout and I DO.. but honestly, I don't want my epitaph to read "She died taking out trash" and what a sad, sad obituary notice that would make.  I would hope, though, that if I died taking out the trash I would get a FANCY burial in one of those flexi bags (preferably one with OdorGuard, thank you) Ok, yes, I KNOW that they don't (legally) let you bury someone in a trash bag but they DO let you bury people in burlap sacks and corrugated cardboard so I am guessing that the barrier to trash bag burials is that they take FOREVER to biodegrade and so if you were buried in a trash bag it would probably have a negative environmental impact.  So, I guess I wouldn't want to be buried in fancy trashbag... but burlap would be itchy so just duct tape some boxes together, stuff me in and call it a day....

(Ant that last sentence is why I should not blog when it's way past bedtime...)

Monday, April 2, 2012

Moving Right Along

In the end, I decided that growing as a writer is more important than my personal feelings about having things change and not being sure if the change was a change for the better.  March actually ended up being a month that carried a great deal of change for me.  It doesn't seem to be bad change, just things that needed to happen/be dealt with.

April will be (hopefully) about growth. Not in a physical way (again, hopefully) but I got things done that will allow me to focus/refocus on other things I have wanted/needed to do.  I have a long weekend coming up, which I hope will allow me to finish up some last little bits of old projects and move along new projects.  I've tried in the past to come up with a blog posting schedule and have found that it just doesn't really work for me. I haven't been able to harness my muse and discipline myself to blog on any given day.  That being said, I do write every day at but it is seldom anything I would post in any of my blogs and more an exercise on being disciplined to get SOMETHING written every day, even if it is only a "brain dump".  I've found it very useful.

So, I'm going to be focusing on posting more and better content, improving my writing and creating new bath fizzies.  Right now, though, there's work to be done and I'd best start doing it.  Have a fabulous week!