Tuesday, December 23, 2008

So like Elaine...

I have picked up a great free lance gig - writing descriptions about office chairs. It is challenging in that all 300 or so need to be unique and upbeat and of a similar style! Also I should not - in the Thesaurus there are only so many words for elegant, modern, comfortable, ect! So it is a challenge. I love it. This is the kind of freelance work I want. Challenging and focused. My editing and MS Word skills are expanding - all good!

I also have become acquainted with the website Elance (www.elance.com) which I love. The escrow feature in particular! Means I have assurance that I will get paid or at least some formal recourse, given my luck with the defunct magazine earlier this year!

So when I tell people about this assignment, most wrinkle their noses and say, "So like Elaine and the Urban Sombrero thing at Peterman."

Um Yeah - Exactly like that! Just call me Elaine! The Elaine of office chairs!

For those of you thinking this project is silly and potentially mind numbing - let me just say I know a few things about Urethane now - go look it up - fascinating really!

Rules of the Pool

Today L and I had a special mommy and me day. E had his last day of school before winter break. It was his holiday party and movie day. So L and I ran errands and picked the crafts for her tea party next week - then we went to the indoor pool at the rec center. (I had rallied hard for the conservatory but she was dead set on the pool.)

The pool really is nice. Large and with 2 slides. One baby slide and one big kid slide. The big kid slide requires that you be 42" tall and able to pass a swim test or over 48" tall and no swim test! Very simple - so between 42" and 48" you have to pass the test.

L wanted to do the big slide! I did not think she would be tall enough, but she climbed up the steps and low and behold down she came. Happy as a clam. She did the slide no less than 10 times before the the rest period. After rest period and the life guard shift, she climbs the stairs only to come down in tears. The new life guard felt she was not tall enough. (Hello her hair is wet....and flat to her head and the last time she had dry hair.) She is distraught for being denied what she had just done. I climb up the steps with her and got attitude. So not his problem.

So I marched us to the pool managers office. I was not taking issue with the rule - IT IS A GOOD RULE! But I was taking issue with the haphazard way it was being applied. There should be safe guards in place to ensure that all the guards are enforcing the rule in the same way. There should be a wet hair or dry hair allowance. Or the kids have to be clearly an inch over 48". Some safe guard. I get that it is a judgement call, but there are ways to ensure that everyone is making a seemingly uniform judgement. (Mgmt 101)

Like I explained the the pool manager - I take no issue with the rule on its face. I take issue that L is seeing people in positions of authority applying the rule in a haphazard way. It is unfair and creates situations where she feel she cannot trust those around her in positions of authority to act in a reliable and principled manner. To be allowed to do something and then 15 minutes later be denied the same privilege is unacceptable in my mind.

The manager agreed. She is just tall enough or just a tad under and she can swim - so she was allowed to proceed. But I could tell she felt confused and let down.

I hope the manager takes the time to express my concern to the life guards. It seems like no big deal, but in reality it really is a big deal!

I would submit that this is an issue in society at large! We as a culture tend to be selective in rule enforcement. I think it is important to be flexible and judge certain things on a case by case basis - but there is also something to be said for being principled and consistent in rule enforcement.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Bread is Dangerous...

I found this elsewhere on the Web and thought I would share it... From my point of view it is funny... While in NYC last weekend, it became abundantly apparent that if I were trapped in Grand Central Station for more than a day, I very well might starve. Other than coffee and fruit, there was very little around that did not involve wheat! Oh the bagels, the scones, the cakes, the pretzels, the sandwiches, and the pasta salad. For me, no different than crack... there is nothing like carbohydrate porn now is there....

Physics 1021 - Bread is Dangerous

  1. More than 98 percent of convicted felons are bread users.

  2. Fully HALF of all children who grow up in bread-consuming households score below average on standardized tests.

  3. In the 18th century, when virtually all bread was baked in the home, the average life expectancy was less than 50 years; infant mortality rates were unacceptably high; many women died in childbirth; and diseases such as typhoid, yellow fever, and influenza ravaged whole nations

  4. More than 90 percent of violent crimes are committed within 24 hours of eating bread.

  5. Bread is made from a substance called "dough." It has been proven that as little as one pound of dough can be used to suffocate a mouse. The average North American eats more bread than that in one month!

  6. Primitive tribal societies that have no bread exhibit a low incidence of cancer, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's disease, and osteoporosis.

  7. Bread has been proven to be addictive. Subjects deprived of bread and given only water to eat begged for bread after as little as two days.

  8. Bread is often a "gateway" food item, leading the user to "harder" items such as butter, jelly, peanut butter, and even cold cuts.

  9. Bread has been proven to absorb water. Since the human body is more than 90 percent water, it follows that eating bread could lead to your body being taken over by this absorptive food product, turning you into a soggy, gooey bread-pudding person.

  10. Newborn babies can choke on bread.

  11. Bread is baked at temperatures as high as 240 degrees Celsius! That kind of heat can kill an adult in less than one minute.

  12. Most bread eaters are utterly unable to distinguish between significant scientific fact and meaningless statistical babbling.

In light of these frightening statistics, we propose the following bread restrictions:

  1. No sale of bread to minors

  2. A nationwide "Just Say No To Toast" campaign, complete celebrity TV spots and bumper stickers.

  3. A 300 percent federal tax on all bread to pay for all the societal ills we might associate with bread.

  4. No animal or human images, nor any primary colors (which may appeal to children) may be used to promote bread usage.

  5. The establishment of "Bread-free" zones around schools.

I think it clear... blame the BREAD - LOL!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Sometimes I am so nt smart...

The girl who has been waxing my eyebrows has left the salon. They were reassigning her book and frankly the scheduled time was the only time I could go...

Grr... I have been putting it off.

So what did the smart woman that I pretend to be do?

Yeah - I decided to try waxing them myself.... the right eye - not bad, the left eye - um well thank goodness my hair grows fast....

Sometimes I am just so not smart!

The Fox and the Hen House

I know you need experience but why is Obama picking an insider to run the SEC. We need someone who is not tainted and who can carry a big stick & bust some balls. Not someone who is considered a low profile caretaker.

I am as a woman happy to see a woman at the helm. But is THIS the woman for the job. I want someone running the SEC who carries a big stick, busts balls and puts these crooks and frauds in their place. Not a rubber stamper and not someone who has been an insider for a number of years. We need a straight talker like Jim Cramer or Suze Orman. Someone who talks straights and will make the SEC talk straight. Chris Matthews even. Their industry experience is less important to me - it is their low tolerance for bullshit which should receive the top billing in this case.

We need someone who will work with the Justice Department and who will be willing to throw those who cheat and lie and play fast and loose with the public's money and trust under the bus.

Wall Street is now taking my tax dollars to their bank in the Caymans and that pisses me the hell off.

I have my doubts that Mary can effect any real change.

So Obama - with this appointment I have to say I am questioning your normally sound judgement.

We need a pit bull and not another industry lap dog.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Victoria - I have a secret for ya!

So I went shopping last week, alone! A rare event. i had a $10 coupon for Victoria's in my purse. I like their Intimisme line and I had poked around online, a pre-shop if you will. What many of you do not know is I LOVE LINGERIE. I seldom have on unmatched bra and panties. When they are not a set, they go together and look put together. After 5 years out of the game (nursing bras are not sexy really.... although the grippers - well I digress...) and I am slowly building back up my collection.

Being in a single digit dress size and having a very nice set - still perky - post baby 36Cs - one would think I could just walk into VICS and go to town. Yeah - not so much... this is the second time in less than 6 months that I have gone to Vics and left empty handed and left feeling decidedly FAT, unsexy, disappointed and frankly irritated. I eat next to nothing fun and exciting and I run a fair amount and I CANNOT WEAR ANYTHING there.... on a consistent basis.

It is either too tight, sized wrong, cut badly and just generally in my opinion of poor quality. The bras do not hug the girls correctly and the very sexy bustier - yeah well in my size and the size up I looked like a stuffed sausage. (my waist might I say is the smallest part of my body - how is this possible??)

I have just gotten used to the new post baby - post marathon - wheat, corn, dairy, soy free body! While I have always been curvy - I am now thinner and curve. I say no to all kinds of foods - so the weight has come off and I am happy. I was happy before - but I am REALLY happy now.

But what I fail to get is how then can I wear nothing at Vic's. Who are they designing for? The entire point of matching bras and panties and bustiers and garters and sexy nighties - is - I should think - to be visually pleasing to ones partner(s) and to make the person wearing it feel like a million bucks. I am willing to spend money on good lingerie - I have the Felina and Jezebel to prove it.

So why is it then Vicki - that the nicest and best fitting stuff I have bought of late has been at Target or HM? Why is it that you are designing stuff that only fits a certain body type - Twiggy??? Instead of creating bras which only created the illusion of curves under clothing - let's create some that flatter those of US who already have the curves. Let's have 36 C's which fit a 36 C - in Felina I am a 36 C! I am willing to entertain a 38B - which is sometimes what I wear at Target. In this the bigger the better - right?

I so would have bought that blue buster and matching panties and matching wrap and garters and well stockings too - to the tune of $130 to $200 if I had looked sexy. Instead I looked like a meatball. Then I went to Target and bought another matching set - on sale for $4.85 and $2.87 receptively. I felt sexy in it.

I know some women would have bought it anyway - but here is the secret. They would buy it and they would put it in a draw and not wear it and that is sad. Lingerie should make a woman feel sexy and powerful and HAPPY. I guarantee you that a sexy, HAPPY, empowered woman will be back year after year - and is not that the image they ought to be pursing? A set of hot panties and and flattering bra put a special smile on my face and I have to think I am not alone!

I know as a feminist - we are taught that being sexy and dressing sexy is somehow wrong. But I say it is about our power and empowerment. There is great joy and power to be found in feeling and looking our best - regardless of size. If the lingerie is made right - it is about showing off the assets and unleashing the inner Goddess.

I am not sure what the house of PINK is up to - but making clothing that makes me feel sexy must not be on their radar.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Burnt Toast

That is the best description I can come up with for the state of my laptop. Burnt Toast. It crashed and burned. I spent the morning trying to find a laptop repair shop. My third try I stumble upon the sweetest geeky guy who looked at me and said, "Let's see what we can do..." He opened her up and then took out the hard drive. Invited me back to his crazy work area and tried like heck to get my hard disk to show up on his hobbled together work bench CPU. Well it could see it but that was it. Data locked up tight...

I had my MBA paper locked up in the mess and I really did not want to rewrite it. Everything else is safe - either backed up or on the web somewhere I can retrieve it. But the drafted paper which was due today - NOT SO MUCH.

I had 2 goals I told him.

1. Get that paper....

2. Ascertain if the laptop was fixable or not. If not or if it was going to cost hundreds of dollars - I was not going there. I only paid $500 for thing and it is 2 years old. I get the math and I have been told that once bits start to break - well it is like a snow ball rolling down hill.

After a number of tries, he looked at me and said, "Well.... um I think we have a problem with the hard disk."

I think he thought I was going to cry.

I said - "Is it a sure bet that I should just go home and write again."

He nodded. Looking hopeful that I would not cry.

He said he was dying to try some new software and maybe he could get back some of the info on my hard drive. He would charge me only $50 if he could. He was unclear whether or not my problem is physical - ie broken ball bearings or if it is mucked up files. I have a whisper of what he called the clicks of death.

I agreed and since the lap top is basically toast - he is going to check it out - but it likely is a shorted circuit and the motherboard (read expensive....) I told him he could have it for parts and I want the hard disk either way.

We shook hands and I came home and rewrote the paper. Thank goodness I had a robust outline and I can type fast.

Thankfully all my back ups are just fine and I had backed the entire thing up recently. Just not the paper....grrr......

So I guess I will go shopping for a new laptop and I am going to invest in another back up hard drive. I work too hard to lose my work product to the hard disk trolls!

Saturday, December 6, 2008

White flakes from hell

Yep that is my general feeling about snow. I hate it. Snow has no redeeming value. So guess what. We have about 2 inches of the stuff.

Wanna guess where is H???


No H is snowed in, in Chi-town in a 3 star hotel, enjoying a hot breakfast, a hot tub, a sauna and a pool. He is studying and on call. He is blissfully alone and surrounded by quiet. Not cooped up in a house with 2 cabin fever ridden children.

What did I do?

I schlepped two kids to the store and back, got gas, and took L to a party. If that were not enough, I shoveled it off the driveway!

How is it that H, who likes snows, always seems to not be here for the chores which come along with it.......

Where is the cosmic fairness in that?

Monday, December 1, 2008


Since today was so gray...

Your rainbow is slightly shaded red.

What is says about you: You are a passionate person. You appreciate energetic people. You get bored easily and want friends who will keep up with you.

Find the colors of your rainbow at spacefem.com.