Showing posts from July, 2009

The people in your neighborhood...

So the house next door to ours is owned by Miss Jean. She is "Mama" to the most delightful 4 year old in the world, whose name is Christian.
He likes me well enough - I'll bring stickers, play with him and whatnot, but Matt, well, it is all about Matt. Those two will sit on Jean's porch and play with cars, roughhouse and generally misbehave for as long as Matt is willing to stay. Christian will tell you that Matt is his best friend, and Matt loves that kid as much as anyone.
Next to Matt, I am chopped liver. Whenever he sees me, the first question is, "Where's Matt?"
Anyway, Matt is working late tonight and when I got home, Jean and Christian were on the porch so I went over and visited. Christian asked me about Lola and said, "Why doesn't your dog like me?" He cocked his head and raised and eyebrow. "Is it because I'm black?" I about fell over. Back in the day, Lola wasn't overly fond of anyone, and since I had a ton of bl…

Good Times with Good People

I had lunch today with my old boss Joe and my colleague, Joey. I've seen Joe once since he departed this world for another - at the April Flight of the Conchords concert with his wife, Karen. I see Joey several times a week, but he is still equally important.

The reason for his visit up to these parts was that, since we're about to leave our current building, he wanted one last meal at La Terazza. It was actually only my second meal there, but it was right tasty.

I had meant to take a picture, but ended up not even bringing my purse, which, naturally contains the camera.

So in lieu of that picture, here is one from December 2007:

I am the only female in the photo - to my left, in the blue shirt is Joey, and to his left is Joe. Aren't we a handsome bunch? The rest of the fools in the picture aren't relevant, but they are, from L to R: Nick, Alex, Dennis and Manish. None of them work here any more.

Note to self - gotta get back down to that weight, then lower.

Onward and u…

Scratch this!

Saturday morning, Matt and I woke up at 7AM. Personally, I wouldn’t have minded sleeping in a bit later, but we had things to do, and couldn’t let the day get away from us.

My first order of business was to get Lola hustled over to Berry Hill Animal Hospital where her kennel awaited. I felt bad, but on one hand, she’s gotten to go on more trips this summer than not. And on the other hand, we were most definitely not going to have the capacity to bring her with us to the Carpet Capital of the World.

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen. We were headed to Dalton, Georgia.

But first, a quick stop at REI’s Scratch and Dent Sale. We got to the store to find 300 people lined up in front of the store, stretching the entire length of the strip mall. I was intrigued. My father used to work at REI, and I never realized how big of a deal the sale really was.

They let us in, and the order line on the sidewalk had turned into Mass Chaos on the sales floor. People were snatching up parkas and tents and b…

It's just a jump to the left...

Well, the bad news is, I do owe Vanderbilt $570. The good news is, they’ll take it on installment, so I’ll be paying it off in increments of no less than $50 a month. How nice of them.

I’m essentially healed from the week’s earlier small maladies, and that’s good. I’m ready for whatever the weekend brings. Matt’s birthday is Sunday. I’m picking up his present today, and I’ll have to reveal what that is at a later time, because while he’s a sporadic reader, this would inevitably be the one time he peeked in unprompted. He doesn’t mean to spoil surprises, but he just can’t help it.

We’ve had a fun week watching the Tour de France. Matt set up my bike on the trainer so I could get used to riding without the threat of hitting pavement. I like to pretend I’m climbing the Alps, but in fact, the small seat on the bike makes my large seat hurt after a very short time. OK, I know, I know – it’s called a saddle. Whatever.

We’re hitting the Scratch and Dent Sale at REI tomorrow – I keep hoping for …


So, I got a bill from Vanderbilt last week for $109, and I thought, "that's not so bad" and I paid it.

I got another bill from Vanderbilt today. $570 dollars. And I nearly passed out on the porch.

Seriously, we need healthcare reform, because even those of us with decent health insurance can't afford to be sick.

I am going to have to call BCBS and Vanderbilt Billing to see if this is a clerical error.

However, looking at the itemized bill they sent me in June, here are a few of the alarming charges:

$29 to check my urine (for what?)
$41 to use the same urine as above for a pregnancy test
$36 for a single dose of Augmentin (my entire 10 day run cost me $10 for 30 pills)

The real big ticket items are the dye contrast injection - $130, and the CT Scan - $1997.

After plowing through the literature, it looks like I might actually owe the money.

Which means that I am going to be in debt because of my tonsils for a long, long time.

Moral of the story? Don't go to the ER.


So, although...

The aforementioned neck pain seems to be dwindling, but I have spent no small amount of time coddling it with stretching, Tylenol, heating pad, and most effective of all, cajoling Matt to work out some knots. He's damn good.

The new issue is a few canker sores. I've been hitting them often with a topical benzocaine and that's super fun. I swear sometimes I feel like a leper.

I couldn't tell you why I'm seeming to fall apart in small ways, but whatever - stress? Maybe. Poor diet? Not so poor, but we all need more leafy greens. No sleep? Ok, that's valid - I haven't been getting nearly enough shuteye for most of this month.

I decided that in light of my issues and since I didn't manage to grab a Lean Cuisine from the house, I'd take a decent lunch today, so I stopped at one of those generic chain fast casual places where chicken fingers and large salads are de rigeur for lunch. I ended up getting a salad and some rolls. All for under $10. And tasty.

But …

Feeling the Crunch

I woke up yesterday with a pain in my neck - it felt like I had pulled a muscle - yeah, nothing says "out-of-shape" like injuring yourself while doing absolutely nothing.

I basically sucked it up and got through the day - Matt worked on it for me and that helped. I put an ice pack on it last night and that felt good. I assumed it would work itself out while I slept and we'd be done.

When I woke up this morning, it turned out that my assumption was incorrect. Go figure. The pulled muscle is now more of a crick, requiring me to hold my head in a position that makes me look like a robin, listening for worms and grubs. Perhaps it also makes me look thoughtful, as though I am considering all angles to a situation before replying. I'll just keep furrowing my brow and nodding at intervals to look erudite rather than afflicted.

I have taken two Excedrin and an Aleve to see if we can mitigate some of the irritation and return to normal. I'm also stretching occasionall…

You can tell a Sigma by her smile, pep and something something...

I’ve managed to de-funk a little, and not a moment too soon!

Matt and I had dinner with Alex last night at Jason’s Deli – one of our favorite reasonably healthy places to grab a bite- I had some poblano corn chowder that was really top notch.

I haven’t been sleeping well this week – strange dreams, generally having a hard time falling asleep and whatnot. I am hoping to have a reasonably restful weekend.

I may try a first batch of jelly this weekend – the habaneros aren’t ready, but I’ve got more jalapenos than I could conceivably use. Plus, the Holy Mole peppers are exceeding my modest expectations. They’re really a pretty color, too. And, red bell peppers, which are the base of my jelly, are on sale at the Kroger, so…

Matt’s birthday is coming up. He wants to take a bike ride to Shelby Park and have a picnic. I don’t ride well at all, or for long, and the prospect of getting on busy roads where there are, you know, CARS and shit that could kill me…well, I’m wondering what ELSE he …

Worth a Thousand Words

Slow!Curvicles Ahead.

Bonjour, Y'all!

Today is Bastille Day - the French equivalent of our July 4th. To celebrate, I brought home cheese and baguette for dinner, and we have some Weight Watchers eclairs for later. Wow, fancy.

Feeling kinda blah, if you want to know the truth. I am ready for some change, and change is slow to come.

My company is moving to a building south of town next month. We have, rather than cubicles, "curvicles", which look like one long curvy desk and no walls or definition between people. I'm apprehensive. We're apparently getting white noise piped in, but we'll see.

One month until the tonsillectomy. It sounds wrong to say I'm excited, but in a way, I am. It'll be good, once the crappiness of it is over.

I guess that's it for the moment - going to go see what Matt is up to.

So how's that working out for you?

I just spent a good half hour in the garden, weeding, trying to get my mind right and my nose back in joint, figuratively speaking.

When I was in high school, as a member of Odyssey of the Mind (a competitive creative problem solving club) I took an pledge, more than once that went as follows:

"Let me be a seeker of knowledge. Let me travel uncharted paths and let me use my creativity to make the world a better place in which to live."

Well, today I got some feedback from the boss reminding me to stick to the path and seek a little less knowledge. Because I knew that contextually, he was right, it of course made me feel a little heartsick for the rest of the day. Because while he's right in context, I wish I were freer to stick to the pledge.

I have to remember that my job isn't about creative, it's about following rules, getting things right, a place for everything and everything in its place.

But I can use those tools to make the world a better place to live, righ…

Modern Day Land Pirates

So, Matt's friend Chris is in town. Chris had some time off, his son David is with Chris' parents, so Chris decided to take a like R&R in Music City.

We headed out yesterday to pursue Chris' hobby, Geocaching.

For those of you, like me, not in the know - the simple explanation is this - you set your GPS, you go to the Geocaching website and pull up some clues based on your zipcode, then you track these clues using the GPS - once there, you look for a container, the "cache" which contains anything from a smallbook, all the way up to the logbook plus some trinkets. The containers ranged in size yesterday from a magnetic keyholder, all the way up to a sandwich sized tupperware container. We found seven of the eight we set out to find. It was pretty neat, and I would never have known they were there.

There's one today we're going to go find - the title of it is "Good Dog 5" - some enterprising soul has placed them in all the local hot dog stands in…

And you are?

Thought for the day, a paraphrase - courtesy David Spade:

"Threatening me with eternal damnation isn’t going to get your problem fixed any faster… "

I don’t know – I’m feeling a little harassed today.

We have a houseguest this weekend – Matt’s BFF Chris – whom we haven’t seen since Christmas. I always enjoy entertaining as it’s an incentive to have a clean house. I didn’t sleep well, in fact, I’m a little sore and I fell asleep in a weird position, so I feel out of it – plus, we’re reaching that time of day where my body shuts down as though it were federally mandated. It’s my own fault for learning the joy of naps in college – but to be fair, the circadian rhythms of the human body are very real.

My surgery date is set for next month. I am thinking of creating a second blog just to chronicle the event. But I’ve been so lax on this blog, maybe that’s just heresy.

Although, I could see if is taken…


Dance Ten, Looks Three

I'm getting my tonsils and adenoids out. The "when" remains to be seen - I'm thinking end of August, start of September.

But it's official - I'll be getting what the handout Dr. Mullins gave me calls a T&A.

And apparently, feeling like crap for a week or two.

But it's worth it. He told me that the CT scan actually did show an abscess, but it was small and they opted not to aspirate. He also told me that once you experience this, you're very likely to keep experiencing it. So let's get it on! Medically speaking of course.

See how easy that was?


PS - First person who can explain the relevance of the title of this post to the contents contained therein gets a free popsicle from Las Paletas (of course, they'll have to bring me one as well while I'm incapacitated and I'll pay for both, plus gas money).

Why July To Me?

A piece of string walks into a bar. The bartender says, “We don’t serve your kind here.” So the string walks outside, ties himself into a half hitch, rolls around on the ground a little and unravels at both ends. He goes back into the bar and the bartender says, “Aren’t you that string that was in here just a few minutes ago?” To which the string replies, “Nope, I’m a frayed knot.”

I tell that silly joke because before I left for a five day hiatus in the North Georgia mountains, I was a frayed knot. Now that I’ve spent nearly a week with some of my favorite people in one of the loveliest places I know, I feel much less frayed and knotted.

We left Nashville Tuesday night, getting to Atlanta around midnight. We woke up the pugs, though their protests from the crate were brief and didn’t wake my parents. We fell asleep almost immediately.

Wednesday morning, Matt, Dad and I had breakfast at Bagelicious – my favorite bagel joint in all of bageldom. I had rye toasted with olive cream cheese. S…