Tuesday, November 30, 2004

Heartbreak Hill, Here I Come!

There is a tradition in this country for a bride-to-be to diet and exercise like crazy in preparation for fitting into a wedding dress and subsequent honeymoon bikini.

I am no exception.

I exercised regularly and vigorously for more than a year prior to my wedding date, but as the big day approached, my workout routine took on a more frantic, intense attitude. At the core, I was worried that once I got on the cruise ship (a la honeymoon), I wouldn't be able to workout. Most of my workouts are done on DVD, and this is obviously a problem when you also require a step and a set of heavy weights. (Have you seen the size of cruise ship cabins lately?) I decided that if I could just run, I would be all set. There's almost always a small gym or a track on those boats, and I figured that if I could condition myself to run, I would have an activity I could continue on the boat.

So almost eight weeks before the blessed event, I started adding walk/runs to my regular routine. I started out slow and gradually added jogging until I was able to go for twenty minutes at a time. This is singularly unimpressive to those of you who run regularly, however, I hate jogging. I can't do it. It really took eight weeks to get to that twenty minutes.

I never jogged once on the cruise ship.


I never jogged at home again.


Until this morning.


I decided that my thighs are just not going to get any smaller this holiday season without some pretty severe intervention. Running is the only thing I haven't tried yet. So I hopped on my treadmill and aimed high with a goal to run for at least ten minutes before I had to slow down and walk. I did a slower paced five minute warm-up and then started jogging. MTV and VH-1 were awful nice companions and the next thing I knew...

I RAN FOR THIRTY-FIVE MINUTES STRAIGHT!


I have no idea how this happened (actually it was probably a byproduct of motherfucking intense workouts for the last eighteen months). But, I had no idea I was capable of such running. I felt like I could conquer the world! I still feel that way.

I'm gonna run again tomorrow... if my shins allow it.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004

Fucking Brilliant

How can one be so proud of a sibling? I thought this feeling of chest-bursting pride was reserved for offspring only.

In regards to the proposal to develop patents in web standards, my brother writes:

I'd like to open with a quote: "The Internet is totally out of control, impossible to map accurately, and being used far beyond its original intentions. So far, so good."

-- Dr. Dobb's Journal May 1993

The great thing about the Internet lies in its democracy. For an investment smaller than that required to view material already published on the Internet, an individual can become a publisher of information of information himself. The openness of the Internet has placed the millionaire and his doorman on an equal footing; the multi-national, multi-billion dollar corporation is no more able to shape the future of the Internet than one man working out of his home. The proposal on the table, "Reasonable and Non-Discriminatory" licensing fees for web standards, will change all this.

Who decides what is "Reasonable"? When the one party earns makes millions of dollars every day from its web site and the other party creates a website as a labor of love, earning not a single penny from it, what fee is "Non-Discriminatory"? the $10,000 that one will not even notice will shut down the other. The name of the policy itself contains that fundamental contradiction.

To see who will benefit from this policy, look at the composition of the working group that proposed it: "Apple, AT&T, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, ILOG, Microsoft, Nortel Networks, The Open Group, Philips Electronics, Reuters, and Sun worked on this drafttogether with W3C Team members." (from http://www.w3.org/2001/08/patentnews)What we see is that the companies who are pushing for this policy are those will profit from it. I urge you to do your part to keep the Internet free and open, and available to the people who made it and continue to make it great.

Sincerely,
Robin X. (X mine)

This letter was written in 1991, when the aforementioned genius was 21. He's going to rule the world one of these days...

K.Y.B.M.S.

The Monkey thinks that if I just keep my big mouth shut, I wouldn't create problems for myself. Case in point:

Yesterday, after hearing Psychic Lesbian co-worker and Really Odd co-worker talking, and working myself into a lather about it, I may or may not have spoken to Assertive co-worker about the situtation.

Assertive co-worker tells me to GO DIRECTLY to Scary Supervisor or even Scary Supervisor's Boss and TELL THEM RIGHT NOW. Jeez, I don't know about this. I'm not really a tattle-taley kinda gal.

It ended up not mattering anyway. I was walking around the office with what The Monkey calls "a puss" on my face and Psychic Lesbian co-worker immediately corners me in the file room wanting to know what was wrong? was I angry? can't you tell me? I think we should talk this through!

So I told her. I may have stuttered a little. I may have avoided eye contact. But it felt good to let her know. And, to my credit, I wasn't bitchy or mean. I just let her know I didn't want everyone knowing my business and they should keep those things quieter.

In the mean time, in a land far, far, away, Assertive co-worker is busy telling Lovely co-worker and Not So Scary Supervisor what Psychic Lesbian and Really Odd co-workers have done now.
(Persecution of these two is an ongoing sport in this office.)

Not So Scary Supervisor passes the tale to Scary Supervisor, who comes to me and asks for details. I did some more stuttering and mentioned how I'd already dealt with it and there was no harm really done, blah, blah, blah, whimp, whimp.

The bad part was the Psychic Lesbian walked around all day looking like she'd been hit. She left for a long lunch with Really Odd co-worker, where I know she shared the details of her trauma.

I hate conflict. I really do. I try to get along with everyone, even if I hate them, just so there's no need for fighting. Now I have to smile pretty at those two weirdos and make extra nicey-nicey so they'll forget I was ever mad at them.

If only I learned to KEEP MY BIG MOUTH SHUT.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

Those Smarmy Bastards

I work in cubicle land.

The walls are about five feet high, but might as well be cotton sheets for all the privacy they afford. This morning, I'm sitting in my own little cubicle, doing my own little work when I hear Psychic Lesbian co-worker and Really Odd co-worker talking in the cubicle next to me.

They are conspiring, two feet away, to represent the tattooed dumbass who grieved the fact I got the job and he didn't.

They are the union stewards for our office. They are supposed to represent the members of the union against abuse perpetrated by management. I am a member of the union.

Therefore, it would reason to say they would protect me. Are they? Well gosh, no. He put in the grievance, so they should stick up for him. I guess it doesn't matter that I've been working side by side with them since June. I guess it doesn't matter that they smile and are sickly sweet to my face. They are going behind my back to try and get me kicked out!

Now, if it had been me, I would have dropped a hint to the person I was trying to backstab. I would have told them that I had to represent dumbass, but that I didn't want to. That I would rather eat glass than go against a co-worker.

Now they're all secreted up in a conference room deciding my fate. If I loose this, I'm never going to take a meaningful job again.


Glade Melon Burst

Someone must have read my post yesterday about The Courtesy Flush.

When I got to the bathroom this morning, there were two cans of air freshner sitting on the shelf.

Nice. Pretty. New.

I wonder if this is my fault?

Monday, November 15, 2004

Courtesy Flush

After discussing this with The Monkey, I've come upon a profound realization.

Men do.

Women don't.

The reason why, I believe, is that women want to pretend they don't poop. If they flush before they're ready to come out of the stall, everyone will know they just went #2. If they don't do a courtesy flush, they can just pretend it was the woman in the next stall or that it was already there.

Men just don't want to kill the guy in the next stall.

Go figure.

Chest Pains A Heart Attack Do Not Make

If you accused me of being a hypochondriac, I would vehemently deny it.

I go see my doctor once every couple years, and my diagnosis is almost always allergies. I have been to see an ENT in the last month (diagnosis: stress-related silent GERD). This was a fun visit because they stuck a long black tube up my nose and down my throat. The numbing spray did nothing to minimize the weirdness of this experience.

So my point. I don't see a doctor too often. Only hypochondriacs do that.

But Damn! I sure do have a lot to complain about. This morning I thought I was having a heart attack. Actually, I was almost convinced. I even took an aspirin, just in case. Now, I'm twenty-eight, within a normal weight range, I eat well, exercise 5-7 hours a week and have no history of familial cardiac disease. Not exactly a high-risk group.

Doesn't matter.

As I went downstairs for my early morning constitutional with Cathe, I dropped a hint The Monkey's way to the tune of:


"Wow. Sure having some chest pains. Hope it's nothing... Probably nothing... Hmmm...

Well, I guess I'll go down now."



The Monkey is busy drinking his coffee and watching The Weather Channel. Besides, he's heard it all before. He doesn't understand that I'm giving him vital information that he can relay to the Paramedics when he gets home and finds my lifeless body laying in front of a static-y TV.

If he can even hear me, he's thinking:



I wish she would SHUT UP and stop complaining about everything. Jeez. Why can't I just relax before I go to work?



Needless to say, the fine EMT's in my community did not have to make a stop at my house today.

I still don't feel right. If I stop and focus, I can feel that black tube snaking down the back of my throat. Assertive Co-worker says I should just go home. I'd love to go home and sleep, but I'm scared to bring it up to Scary Supervisor. I've used a lot of sick time for phony reasons already this year.

I guess I'll just sit here and tingle. I hope the paramedics don't have to cut my clothes off. I just bought them...

Sunday, November 14, 2004

It's Just Plain Wrong.

Today The Monkey and I went to town to shop. Not that there's no stores nearby, but nothing like in town. I picked up a few goods, both necessary and un.

On the way home, we stopped to get gas and in the silence of the full-serve pump, the radio caught me off guard.

Will you squeeze my lemon
'Til the juice runs down my leg

The Monkey just laughed.


Saturday, November 13, 2004

Sadly Disappointed

A couple weeks ago, I bought one of those home ovulation predictor kits. For under $20, you pee on a stick and if two lines show up, you're supposed to (and I quote):


Have Sex Now!


The Monkey wasn't happy when he initially saw the kit. Not because he didn't want to have children, but because I spent money without telling him. This eventually evolved into a bigger, monkey shrieking, pillow throwing, guest room sleeping, no make up sex fight. But I digress...

I figured that my time had come, and maybe two lines were in my future. Two days ago, I tested in the early morning, and there was a faint second line. Feelings of ongoing annoyance with The Monkey kept my mouth shut about the test.

Yesterday, despite the above mentioned annoyance, I was talked into a rare bout of coital bliss. I did happen to mention to The Monkey that the faint line was present the previous day. (God forbid that I be accused of keeping anything from him, or even worse, tricking him into impregnating me.) This was apparently okay, because I was thrown onto my back and the fun commenced.

This morning, I woke up

Knowing.

Sure enough. Two very visible, very telling lines appeared on the stick. I gleefully shared this information with The Monkey. I mean, he was agreeable yesterday. Why not try today, when the deck seemed stacked with just a few more face cards?

"I'm feeling pressured."



Fair enough.

"No pressure. We don't have to try."


"I'm scared."



Yeah. No shit, Sherlock. How do you think I feel?

I would guess the difference between our mutual hesitation is that his is probably more monetary, and mine is the thought of tying myself forever to someone that I don't even like on some days.

I know, I know. I'm married. That's pretty tied. Should've thought of that sooner, I guess.



To top it off, yesterday, in the parking lot, on my way to my car, my supervisor stops me. He tells me that the job I have been working in since June may be in jeopardy. The tattooed moron who interviewed against me has more seniority than I do, and even though the interview committee decided that they didn't need any doo-doo heads working in my current position, he apparently appealed to the union and his grievance may be substantiated. This means two things for me.



A. I will be bumped from a job that I just moved into.
B. I would have to go back to THE JOB FROM HELL.



There is no way I would go back. No. Way.



I explained this situation to The Monkey.



"Don't worry about it. You can come and work with me."




I really, really felt immediately better. It's not that I have any delusions about working with him being all fun and games. I mean, he's the type of guy that doesn't want me standing in the same room with him when he's doing something. But it made me feel better because I didn't have to worry about money or going back to THE JOB FROM HELL.


On our way back from the movie (which I loved, but could see why others wouldn't), I mentioned to him that I was



"So relieved"



He got very quiet and had a funny look on his face. I know him well enough to know that look. It roughly translates into:



"This is not a good idea. Why did I say that to her? How do I get out of this?"



I was surprised to see that look. It was his idea to begin with. Why would he look like that? In a stingy, whiney, I don't want to share my toys tone of voice, he says:


"Well, we'd have to buy you a boat. And equipment. I don't see how we would make any more money with you just helping."

"Oh, Forget it."


I don't know why I expected more from him. Very disappointed...

Friday, November 12, 2004

Intake

Oh my.

The hours are inching by. On a normal day, I wouldn't spend so much time doing non-work related things on my computer. But today. Oh, today. There is nothing going on.

Yesterday was Veteran's Day, tomorrow is Saturday. Therefore, most folks took today off to make it a four day rest fest. I foolishly agreed to cover intake for a co-worker, and am thus stuck at work, at the desk, all day. (Wow, three commas in that sentence!)

There are things I could be doing. Let me think:

  1. Filing
  2. Writing contact notes
  3. Typing assessments
  4. Scheduling visits

Instead:

  1. Drank my 8 cups of water
  2. Ate my lunch and two snacks
  3. Made blueberry tea
  4. Drank #3
  5. Read through my favorite blog sites
  6. Listened to a co-worker get locked out of her computer three times
  7. Listened to everyone's music (Oh, the joys of cubicleland)

You notice that "work" was missing from the above list. Unless eavesdropping on everyone is work.

I am now at 40 minutes until the bell.

It's not like there's anything really good going on at home. I'm trying to get The Monkey to agree to go see "Birth" at the movies. The reviews are not great, but there's something about Nicole Kidman's new haircut that makes me want to see that movie. I have a similar looking head of hair and it makes me relate to her on a completely non-financial, non-sucessful level. The only problem is that The Monkey is tight.

Tight: 11 [Inf.] stingy

He doesn't think that going to the movies every week is a good use of money. I respectfully disagree (insert monkey shrieking here). I'll betcha I get to go. It may take some persuading of the physical kind.

Oh, who am I kidding? I'm too tired for any of that nonsense.

Despite the fact that there may not be a movie in my immediate future, I'm still itching to go home. Instead I get to be the last one out of the building... to lock all doors... to set the alarm... to hope I get it right so that the police aren't summoned with siren's blaring.

What's this? Here's something new and exciting...

According to my lovely co-worker, Scott Peterson was just found guilty on all counts. The way November was going, I was sure he was going to get off. First Bush gets re-elected through an honest to God miracle, then Scott goes free. Lovely co-workers says:

"Well, you get one of the two..."

Yeah, well I'd rather have Scott Peterson living next door than George Bush as president.


No, it's not...

Theo The R Monkey

Something's Missing

I'm dizzy from the shopping mall
I searched for joy but I bought it all
It doesn't help the hunger pain
And a thirst I'd have to drown first to
ever satiate

When autumn comes
It doesn't ask
It just walks in where it left you last
You never know when it starts
Until there's fog inside the glass around
your summer heart

I can't be sure that this state of mind
Is not of my own design
I wish there was an over-the-counter test
For loneliness like this

--taken gratefully from John Mayer

Footnotes

I guess I should start with an introduction.

My husband is a monkey.

Which makes me "The Other One".

He created this delightful nickname and it's supposed to be cutesy. Picture this:

"Who's my monkey?"
or even
"Oh, lookee, the little monkey!"
and sometimes
"Where's the monkey dog?"


In a strange way, I sorta enjoy it and I can't think of anything better to call myself. I don't have fur, by the way. Nor do I swing from trees. I do eat lots of bananas and scream with a monkey-like shriek when aggravated.

I have a day job with a big state agency in a medium-sized state. I sit at my desk a lot and try to look busy. Mostly I'm perusing interesting tidbits on the internet. Otherwise, I'm making fun of certain co-workers with other co-workers and hoping like hell they aren't making fun of me behind my back.

I want a camera for Christmas. A nice, digital, expensive, not necessary, but lovely camera. We'll see if The Monkey buys it for me. He's almost promised.

My favorite color is pink, or purple or something else girly. When I was in high school, I wore black T-Shirts and Chuck Taylor Converse sneakers everyday. I wouldn't get caught dead with anything pink on me. I have now, ten years later, come out of that closet and embraced my girlyness.

I'm recently married and thinking about having kids. The Monkey and I have been living together for six years but recently took the necessary legal steps. Sometimes I get frustrated with The Monkey and think that children is a bad idea. That damn clock! I read lots of blog from infertile women, and I'm terrified. (Note to others: trying three times does not make you infertile.) I don't know what I'm terrified of more - failure or success.)

I workout avidly to home videos. This does not automatically make me a wuss. I do not own any Jane Fonda and the only copy of Denise Austin I own is a terrible yoga workout. I do workout to Cathe, Christi Taylor and The Firm. These are pretty hardcore workouts and have helped me go from a size 12 to a size 4/6. I wouldn't necessarily call myself a goddess - I don't know if you can when you're already calling yourself a monkey - but I'm happy with how they've worked. They sit in a collection of about 50 fitness videos in my basement.

That's it in a nutshell. I have aspirations to do lots of things, but mostly they just stay aspirations. My talent lies in the self knowledge that I should leave most things to people who do them better. I'm gonna blog for a while to see how it feels.

If if doesn't work, well, I am just a monkey.