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About this blog

Random musings on Romance

Entries in this blog

 

The ups and downs of Valentine's night

Ok, let's get things starting off correctly: I'm not the type of girl who sits at home moping around. I could give a bleep less that I don't have a date on Valentine's night...I'm still going out! I mean, hell, if you're sitting in a full restaurant, then you're not eating alone, right?   So last night's plan: take the light rail 'downtown' (aka 15 blocks), go to dinner around 7, watch a bit of hockey at the bar of the restaurant, and then go to my movie (as I mentioned in the latest movie thread, I saw "Vince Vaughn's Wild West Comedy Show," which got good reviews from me).   Dinner: once I found out that the Sharks (NHL team here in San Jos

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Here Comes Peter Cottontail

Easter is a time of year when families comes together to eat. At least, that's what I always figured. I mean, we woke up to chocolate in the shape of gold coins, little egg-shaped chocolates, and other surprises that the Easter Bunny would leave for us while we slept. After going to Mass (perhaps the only time we went to Mass on Sunday instead of Saturday evening) when we actually had to wear really, really good clothes, we'd pose for pictures in the garden before a big brunch. Oh, and magically the Easter Bunny would pass by a second time while we were at Church, because there would be eggs strewn all over the garden and we'd all have chocolates in egg form from the local chocolatier. After goofing off all afternoon, there'd be some sort of dinner with many members of the Italian-side of the family, with a full multi-course Italian meal: appetizers, antipasto, pasta, and the entr

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

And the countdown begins!

2 May 2007. 12noon CDT. That'll be the judgement day.   No, not the one with the pearly gates, and some Peter-man standing there with his list. Instead I speak of the day when my professors decide if I'm worthy enough to stand with them as a colleague.   The 'final' draft will be sent out Tuesday; one month after that I will be in front of my academic setting, answering questions that I've prepared for, as well as others that I haven't.   This is it! I'm geeked for this...I want this so bad, I can taste it. I've worked so hard, and I really hope that everything goes as planned, and that I'm accepted.   So, wish me luck!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Just An Aside--summer Is Here!

Yesterday and today are supposed to be some of the hottest days on record. San Mateo is 20 miles south/southeast of San Francisco, and, as the crow flies, it's approximately 10 miles from the Pacific Ocean. But there's a range of 'high hills' (in other parts of the country, they'd be mountains...but they're too short for that, really) in between, so the fog and ocean breezes are affluent. It's what makes this area so amazing...the heat doesn't really come, and the fog cools us off every night.   Except now hehe   Yesterday, "officially," it was 105'F...our thermometer read 107...in the shade. At least it's dry, not sticky, so it's quite palatable. Our downstairs is up against the hill, so it's much cooler than the upstairs; so I split my time in my office (which is downstairs) and the wine cellar. My dad brought up some big fans--he uses them for when he paints, but they came in handy last night, as there was no wind and no fog.   After the sun went down, every window in the house was open to the max, and the fans were blasting. The downstairs cooled off very nicely, which made sleeping comfortable. But, whew! It felt like the Central Valley all over again!   Today Dad's power-washing the house, so it'll be much cooler in here today. But outside it'll be plenty warm; it's 9:48am, and already it's 85'F outside. It'll be another scorcher today!   (By the by...this weather makes for bad editing climes hehe)

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

D-Day

Dun dun dun dun DUN dundun dundun dundun....   In about 90 minutes, I'll start my dissertation defense. So why am I on a computer, you ask? Because I had to print out stuff, and since I have time to kill, I decided to spend it doing something, rather than waiting around nervously.   Oh, I won't be on here long. But it's weird. I'm jittery...not a lot, but a little. Nerves of steel had better show up quick...   Update at 11...or this afternoon, whatever.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Me and Karma had a talk...

This week was the shits. Absolutely one of the worst in my life. So, I made an appointment with Karma and we had a chat. It was a good airing out of grievances; I made it clear that her mechanations this week caused me to have a craptastic week, and she got a good laugh. But she promised that things will look up. I'd like to hold her on that, but seeing as how Karma is a wee bit fickle, and a bit of a bitch, I don't totally trust her. Her sister, Fate, is a lot nicer to me, although quite aloof and capricious.   Anyway, to make sure that Karma and Fate were on my good side, I decided that being taking matters in my own hands would be a good thing. On my walk today (4.2 miles...shorter this time, but a new route), I signed up at a different gym, one which has better facilities and more of an active social calendar than the one I'm at now. Basically, it's a gym and a network/social hall all in one. Part Elks Lodge (minus the overbearing male atmosphere), part 24 Hour Fitness. It's more than I pay now, true, but the atmosphere is much better...the pool is great, which is what I want, and it's 5 blocks down the street...I have no excuse now.   Ran errands...although Karma had fun with me again, making me late to the bank (so, no quarters...which means no doing laundry) and having the meter maids come 'round while I was dropping off my paperwork at the gym ($28...goddammit). But I've now made bread, and am about to make spaghetti gravy (I'm out...I can't believe it!). I'll work on grading later, and then will have a night in with the movies; The Last King of Scotland came in the mail via NetFlix the other day, and I want to watch it before I meet up with my brother tomorrow. Bella wants to play, which is always uplifting, although currently she wants to sit on my lap, and I'm about to go in the kitchen again.   Things are looking better...they always do get better. The sun is shining again!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

The famous Ramos

Lost Warrior's comment about holiday traditions got me thinking about one in my family: Ramos Fizzes. Depending on who you believe, it was created in New Orleans (by some bartender named Ramos) or in San Francisco (prolly not true, but I'm sticking by this version out of sheer regional pride--and, yes, I truly believe that the martini was created in a bar in Martinez, California...screw NYC). Certainly the recipe in our family is a version of the ones more commonly known...the use of Peychaud's bitters along with lime juice is key in ours. Also, a ton of good gin--well, ok, that's my dad and I, since the bartenders in my family tend to not care as long as the bottle says "gin". Either way, it'll definitely put the Merry in your Christmas...and knock you on your a$$ at the same time.   And now, at 9:35am PST on 22 Dec, I give you the Petrucci Ramoz (note the spelling!) Fizz: 1/2 blender cracked ice 3 egg whites 3 tablespoons superfine sugar 1 lime, juiced 3 jiggers half-and-half (the diary kind, mind you) 5 jiggers gin (make it good, please) 3/4 of an eyedropper of bitters (Peychauds, please) and orange flower water   Blend together, then add about 1 jigger of lemon-lime soda or club soda. Blend quick, and *hiccup* enjoy!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Fruit of the Silvery-Green Tree

What is it about olives?   Just...what is it about them?   I used to hate them until very recently; the brine or cure in which they are placed often either tasted bad to me or really didn't sit well in my stomach. In general, most things that are pickled set my tummy into the duck-and-cover position, unless the balance is so light on the vinegar that it hardly has bite. Sourkraut is a total no-no, and most gardinera mixes (Italian pickled veggies, which are often part of an antipasto spread) never go past my lips. Essentially, only kosher dill pickles and 2 recipes in my possession for pickled beets were the only pickled items which didn't sour my gastromic organ. (Yet my absolute favorite 'dressing' for salad is rice wine or red wine vinegar, and plenty of it, or lemon juice and a hint of olive oil...who knew?)   Well, things have changed. The Brilliant One (as my mother calls me, rolling her eyes at the same time) has figured out that if I take olives, wash off the brine or cure, that they are tollerable, and more often than not they're damned tasty. I started with oil-cured Provencal olives...and have now tried it with Kalamata and Nicoise olives. This is amazing!   See, I grew up on olive oil (extra virgin, please), and love the taste of it. Hell, there is nothing better than a loaf of crusty bread straight out of the oven, dipped in olive oil/balsamico/cracked pepper...in fact, my heart breaks (hah) when all that's left is olive oil. The taste is devine. And I always knew that it was the brine/cure that was setting me off...just that I didn't put 2 and 2 together to get 10.   Now? Oh, there's always chopped olives in my salad...and the funniest part came tonight. Often when I'm chopping stuff, Bella (my cat) gets curious and wants to smell what I'm doing. So, I figured I'd let her smell an olive that I just cracked open and pitted. She couldn't stop smelling it! She didn't want to lick it--thank God, as I'm pretty sure that olives are bad for cats--but it was such a different smell that she didn't know what to do.   So, I repeat: what is it about olives!?

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

And people wonder why

Ok...just to note...it's taken me almost a week to blog this...only because every time I think about it, it infuriates me.   Thesis: People don't know how to raise kids anymore.   Events: I was sitting at a local fast-ish food restaurant (meaning: it's still burgers, fries, etc., just that they cook things to order), minding my own business, when this group sit behind me. 2 women, sisters or -in-law from the sound of things, with 2 kids (boy was about 4, girl about 5) who belong to one of the women. One woman was explaining that they had just literally gotten off the plane from a trip to Florida to visit family, and there was an incident on the plane. The kids were 'fighting'...and to retaliate for some act, the boy spit on the girl. Evidently he was told that he was naughty, but that's it. And in recounting the tale, the other woman asked the little boy why he did it (with that amount of emotion, too). His response, with a grin: I dunnnoooo....she was bothering me. And the mother, non-chalantly, just reacted as if 'kids will be kids'.   Now, here's what pisses me off to no end: As a child, if my brothers or I even hinted that we were going to fight, we were given *the look* (we all know what look that was, too), and we all knew that if we continued, not only would we be hauled out of there toot-sweet, but we'd get our bottoms whacked. Mom meant business...and if we were really bad (which perhaps only happened once...I doubt it), she would tell Dad, who would also dispense justice. In essence, we didn't go out on errands, let alone special trips, very often, and we were to be on our very best behavior when we did. Punto...finale   Furthermore, I can recall only once spitting at my brother (the one I would fight with)...only once, because when it happened my mother slapped me on the face (something she never did), washed my mouth out with soap (which I got to tollerate...me being a potty-mouth and a smart ass), and she wouldn't talk to me for the rest of the day. Then I got the lecture: spitting on people is an evil thing, extremely dirty, and only animals do that...and at that, most animals wouldn't do it. I believe I was grounded (aka no dessert) for a short time, too. I got the hint...as did my brothers, who didn't dare repeat the incident, lest they be subjected to the same treatment. It was swift, and honestly I can't say that it wasn't merited.   So...granted, on a plane you might not want to smack your kid around...at least, not mid-air. But going out to lunch afterwards, which most kids see as a positive thing? And worse yet, acting as if it's no big deal? Where the hell are the manners???   See? It's been almost a week, and it still raises my hackles.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Summertime

Whew. I made it! Well, ok, it's not quite done yet; next week is finals week, and I still have plenty of work to do before I leave for San Antonio and Austin on 4 June, but one class is completely closed for the spring, and the other two will be shortly. I'm telling you, I didn't think I would get so slammed with work.   Just a couple of random musings:   [*]MSNBC is reporting something that I've heard rumors about in some of the publications I get, that more and more 'traditional' 4-year universities are starting to offer Bachelors' degrees in 3 years. It's a cost-cutting move--shave a year off of your education, and it's that much debt that you (or your parents) don't have to incur. This is also coming at a time when many community colleges (which offer Associates' degrees that traditionally take 2 years to complete--the colleges I've been teaching at are of this model) are teaming up with 4-year universities to offer these Bachelors' degrees on the community college campus; Ca

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

The countdown begins...

4 May 2007. That's the defense date. From now until the end of March, I'll be using any time I have that's not spent in the classroom or on the retail floor probably in the library, working furiously to finish my dissertation in full. The pre-defense went well--many comments, mostly that I need to focus more on my topic (I'm too talkative and vague...go figure lol), but my committee gave me very specific details as to how to hone this. But, overall, they liked what I had written so far...and that's the best news of all. So, from now until 30 March, I'll be busy busy busy, reading, analyzing and writing, and will get this whole thing done. There is a light--it's real, not a mirage--and it's at the end of the tunnel. I'm almost there.   And if you can spare an extra brain cell or two for me, I would be very appreciative; I'll be burning my furiously. You will be rewarded with my eternal grattitude.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Running on Fumes

Anyone who knows me or has been around me quite a bit knows that I'm basically a ball of energy. I can run at a high level for a long, long time. I do my best work in the afternoon and evening, especially when I work-out in the morning; I never go to bed before 11:30pm, and I still wake up refreshed in the morning. But when I crash...look out.   This week has been a difficult one, not because of anything in particular. I know I'm starting to crash, and it's the week before Spring Break. I've made it thus far: 3 exams, graded 2 of them (the other doesn't have to be out until after break), and created 2 exams. Just the two classes to teach tomorrow. Then I can relax. But, man, I'm running on fumes right now.   When I crashed before, I would spend a fair amount of my evenings on the couch. It was easy: finish eating dinner, put dishes in the sink, then lay down on the couch and watch tv until I fell asleep. Wake up, take a shower, go to bed for the night. However, when one lives in a 400 sq.ft. studio apartment, this isn't exactly feasible. For one, my 8-foot couch is in my brother's garage. For another, if I want to pass out in front of the tv, I get to sit in my computer chair. Otherwise, I can lay on the bed, and watch tv on an angle...and wake up with a terrible neck pain. Nope, no good.   So, I'm doing the next best thing: drinking wine, with my cat on my lap, and doing nothing. Tomorrow night I have a date, so I'll come home from campus, eat a bit, go work out, and take a nap before getting ready. Tonight I'll also give meself a mani-pedi (for you guys: manicure and pedicure...and yes, I do it myself)...I need it anyway, as it's almost sandal weather. But I'm enjoying these next few days...even though I have all next week off of school, I have exams to grade, scholarship applications to review, and other stuff to work on come Wednesday. But, oh, I get to recharge!!!!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Lookie what I got in the mail!

Innit puuuuuuuuuurdy!?   (BTW, to borrow the British expressions...I'm bleeding on Cloud 9, but and completely knackered...but am enjoying some champers to celebrate nonetheless!)   (I can't upload the damned picture, for some stupid reason, but it's in the Gallery: click here)

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

What goes around...comes around...

*Taking off the Dr. John hat and feathers for a moment*   First, one must read this: Judge in hot water over Web site sex links   So, basically, California is a laughing stock, and our beloved 9th District Court of Appeals is up to usual shennanigans. Just google them, and see how idiotic they are, in general.   There is much that comes to mind when I see/read this. But what slays me is this:     I'm sorry...how does one not know what's on one's website??? Oh, and then this beaut...     What the f*&)((&* hell is your kid (I don't care how old) uploading shit onto your site...and you're a bleeding judge??? How does one not know what content is on one's site????? Where do you draw the line? How about telling your kid that dude needs help, and taking the proverbial keys away!   Christ, where to start....   *Trapses back to the keyboard...puts the Dr. John hat and feathers back on...*

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

You Can't Always Get What You Want...

Wow, I finally finished. It took the better part of 5 weeks of planning, learning, and implementation, but the major summer project was finished as of Friday morning: the Workshop Site.   Ok, I'll explain: like many community colleges (and often in 4-year universities), our college has workshops for those learning and/or improving their English reading and writing skills. Some of the workshops are grammar-based, others are study-skill-based, but they're all open to any student so that they can improve their chances at a higher grade in their courses. For the foreign language students, well, there ain't squat. We have been sending them to these grammar courses, since many times students will come in with questions on parts of speech and the like--the product of not having studied these elements since elementary school or, in very rare cases, middle school. The problem is that, since these courses are geared for those who either are learning English or who are very poor readers and writers, they aren't really helpful for those who are fully literate and capable English-speaking adults. They needed something a bit different...but we didn't have anything.   So, I made it my mission to create an on-line solution, using the online course management software that we use in the district, which I have been using for the last several years extensively. It took a lot of time to conceptualize what I wanted it to look like, the content both on the site and in the movies/animated PowerPoint slides...but I finally got it done. And I did it on my own...as in, without pay. (Such a dedicated employee....) As a reward, I decided to take the weekend off.   Yesterday, I packed some stuff to work on in my leisure (why can't I just lay on a beach and sleep???), a picnic lunch, and took off in my car. I started down Ca

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Cousins

A friend on Facebook shared this video...and I was in stitches. Warning, there's a lot of Scottish...perhaps there's foul language, but it's Scottish...but can anyone really tell?     It reminds me of growing up, and the variety of languages and dialects that I heard. We had in our immediate neighborhood: Irish (from Muenster), Scottish (from Glasgow), Filipino (specifically, Tagalog), Japanese, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Hindi. If you expanded it to those I went to school with, you'd have to include the rest of the English-speaking world, half of Polynesia, various dialects of Spanish, at least two regional dialects of Italian, Greek, Armenian, Farsi...wow, the list goes on and on. I grew up hearing so many versions, pronunciations and combinations of English, it's a miracle that I came out with the 'standard West Coast' dialect myself.   Thanks to Hollywood, everyone things that California is this liberal utopia (save for Orange County), but in fact the Central Valley is home to many 'country folk'--or redneck, if you're a Jeff Foxworthy fan ( ). To be sure, the population there exploded during the Dust Bowl era (the 1930s), and all the Oakies and Arkies settled in the agricultural areas to work the fields, hoping to get a plot of land of their own. This is when my dad's family ran away from their lives in southwestern Missouri--another story for another time--and settled in Sacramento, the capital of the state and, one could say, the northern point of the Central Valley. Between the farms and the military bases, the flow of people from the south-central and south-eastern part of the United States has been fairly constant. As a result, to this day you still hear 'rural' American dialects well-represented. My dad's family isn't immune to this manner of speech.  I noted as a child how my dad sounded 'normal' at home and in our area, but the second he was in the company of his sister (the only one of his (at that time) 5 siblings that he liked), he would immediately sound 'country'. And he knew it, so much so that the whole hour-long car ride back home to the Bay Area he would talk a ton just to get the 'country' out of his system.   Today we all spent time with that same aunt of mine--one of my cousins passed away unexpectedly, and today was the funeral. Dad's gotten over his linguistic self-consciousness, and didn't even care that he slipped back into his ancient speech pattern. But what I wasn't prepared for was the fact that I did it, too...I started sounding country, just a hint of it, like when I lived in Texas.   There is a theory of socio-linguistics that holds that there are people with strong ties to their speech community, and others who have weak ties. Those with strong ties will never lose their speech patterns--their 'accent', if you will--and do not associate with many people outside of their speech community for any length of time. The ones who have weak ties to speech communities are the opposite; much like honey bees, they go to various speech communities, sound a little like all of them, tend to have neutral speech patterns (which helps communicativity in various groups), and are the ones who introduce change to different speech communities. Just like the honey bee that goes from one flower to another to pollinate them all, those with weak links bring various modes of speech to various speech communities, just to see what sticks.   Clearly Dad and I are weak links...and not in the Anne Robinson meaning. I can't speak for him, but perhaps that's part of why I never did feel comfortable about that side of the family. Eh, it's all good in the end.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Space Oddity

So, NASA is ending an era with the last space shuttle launch. The 'nauts linked up with the International Space Station, there was good cheer to be had by all, and down here we're supposed to lament and cherish this last bit of space exploration by us 'Mericans for a bit. Hmmmm.   Let's face it, I grew up at the very end of the Cold War, so this 'Space Race' stuff is beyond me a bit. Oh, sure, I love sci-fi movies and stuff, and would love to get a chance to see the earth and everything else from space. Mine is the generation that grew up with "Star Wars" over "Star Trek," but we all knew that space was cool because NASA told us so. Like Captain Kirk told us (actually, told our parents initially...we just got it in re-runs), space is the final frontier. But at the same time, I never understood the big hubbabaloo. I mean, so the government doesn't fund space exploration...so what?   Now that I'm an adult, I'm glad that Sir Dickie Branson and other rich folk are taking up the slack. Isn't that the next step to what we saw in "Total Recall?"   Now, on a different note...with the fog and the few high clouds on this beautiful summer day, we're set up to have a gorgeous sunset. I've got a half(ish) moon to gaze at, and perhaps some constellations. Wonder if the Vulcans are watching us?

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

No Need For A/c...

...cuz I'll be working with the coooooooooool people...IN NORDIES!!!   Yep, you saw that right...I'm the newest member of the sales team at the local Nordstrom's. Women's active wear. Lots of workout gear, lounge suits, and general clothing for women who wish to look posh as they perspire/glow. I see commission checks rolling in!   But first: 3 full days of training...but, hey, that's why they're good...the sales staff are well trained!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Humility and blessings

I often count my blessings, noting that I've been smiled upon by Whoever Up There for the opportunities that I've had, and hopefully will continue to have. This year, 2007, is a huge year for me and my family, for so many reasons. This year I will finish my dissertation, and get some kind of full-time job;
My parents are about to move, having sold their house of 30 years and have bought a brand-new house in a new development;
My youngest brother, having finished another set of travels, seems to want to settle down here (for now);
My middle brother is attempting to buy a condo in his complex, and looks like he might do it.

But these are not the only reasons: This marks 100 years since the birth of my paternal grandmother (although she passed away in 1975);
This marks 100 years since 3 of my maternal great-grandparents emigrated here from Milan and Genoa (my grandmother's mother came in 1910).
My 4 great-grandparents came here with very little education in Italy--maybe to the 2nd or 3rd grade, enough to scribble their name and do basic math; their children all had a high-school education, and in the case of my grandmother and her sister, went onto a business (e.g. secretaries) college. My grandfather and his brothers were all business owners and professionals. Of their 5 great-grandchildren, 3 have college degrees, and one is about to finish a PhD.   But that's nothing.   My paternal grandparents came from Indian Territory--no doubt they have Indian blood in them, although documentation is negligible at best--and were quite poor. My grandmother had an 8th grade education--unheard of at that time, and it would have allowed her to teach at a school. My grandfather only got through the 2nd grade...was illiterate, and couldn't really do much beyond very rudimentary math. He couldn't even sign his name. Their granddaughter is about to finish a PhD.   I am truly humbled, even emotional, when I reflect upon that. My dad said I should mention it at my defense...I might. It'll definitely be in the forward of the dissertation. My roots are not exactly blue, but we as a people have fought to get the best that we could. Inside of 3 generations, we've gone from illiterate to highly educated. It's not just pride that I feel...it's honor.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Lunch, even in 15 or so minutes

I've come to a realization in life.   Well, more than one, but this is just the latest.   I can multitask very well--indeed, I have all my life. Working in a kitchen, I can have 3 pots going at once and know what's going on. I can even carry on a coversation while doing it. I sing along to whatever music I have filling my domicile while I work in the kitchen or in the garden. In fact, even if there is no electronic device playing music, the music in my head is playing, and I'm singing along while I'm working.   One thing I don't do well: eat and work at the same time. Oh, I can do it...and then usually end up making a mess.   It never fails...this morning, I was checking email whilst munching on my Honey-Nut Cheerios and strawberries (which, btw, our local stawberries are outstanding this year!) and slurping the milk in the bowl...and proceed to knock over the spoon resting in the bowl...thus tossing little oat Os and milk on the table. No, nothing was ruined, or even mildly damaged, but once again I've proven to myself that eating and working don't mix.   So I've decided to never do it again. I need to just sit back, enjoy whatever meal I have (even if it's just a bit of a sammie or a bowl of ice cream) and not worry about work. Or, I can think, perhaps jot down a memo...but no typing, no major reading/writing/editing.   Besides, they say that eating and working is bad for digestion, that we eat too fast and too much if we're distracted. Enjoying our meal is supposed to be just that--joyful--which means talking is good, laughing is better, but working is not good.   Procrastinator moi, that appeals to me quite nicely!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Ah, the feeling of summer!

There are aspects to summer that everyone can count on. The sweet smell of blooms in the garden. The salty air experienced on a vacation at the coast. Watching lightning bugs flicker in the evening darkness.   For me...I can count on the fact that I'm not just mosquito fodder, but I'm a gormet meal.   Well, I must be...it doesn't matter what I do, I'm bitten. I've yet to find a product, either natural or chemical, which keeps the suckers off of me. I've been offered all sorts of remedies--clothing, balms, sprays, types of food or vitamins--which are all supposed to keep the bothersome bugs at bay. Nothing works. They find ways to eat me alive. There's one sure thing that works: stay indoors at dawn and dusk. This doesn't always work...sometimes, a girl's gotta go!   Case in point: I teach from 3-5 and 6-8pm, and during that break between 5-6pm, I eat dinner and 'use the facilities' on campus. Yep, at dusk...but I don't have a choice! This campus is, well, oddly laid out; many buildings don't have restrooms, but there are glorified outhouses--buildings that are only restrooms--sprinkled all over campus. (No, this is not typical for a college campus.) Around campus there are several redwood trees, which are famous for attracting mosquitos.   So, Monday at break I went to the glorified outhouse...and was the proud recipient of 'love bites' on my forehead and chin. Yes, they do bite people on the face. Tuesday there were two 'tokens of affection' on my left shoudler. Yes, they went through my shirt sleeve and bit me. Yesterday I received another 'token of affection': on my neck, right along my trachea!!!   When I used to live in Texas, all I would have to do is go outside for 20 minutes, and I'd come back inside with 15-30 bites all over me. It's like I'm a 7 course meal complete with fois gras, caviar, filet mignon, lobster, and a few Bordeaux all rolled into one.   As for itch-relief, I can say that Benadryl maximum-strength gel works decently...and doesn't stink to high Heaven. I'm still looking for a better remedy; the spray isn't as good, I'll tell you that.   Now I'm wondering how and where they're gonna get me tonight. Ah, yes, the special feelings *scratch scratch* of summer!

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

New digs!

So I'm finally able to move out on my own again, and am now 'broadcasting' from my new apartment! It's a small studio in downtown/Japantown San Jose, in an old Victorian. No, Don Tomato, it doesn't have A/C...it has a gas heater. That's it.   But this place is almost done. Most all of the boxes are unpacked; the rest will be done once my brother puts up a bookcase for me. Some stuff remains in his garage; other will be given to Goodwill/Salvation Army. But most everything I have fits in here! With room to spare!   But, wow...I've spent close to $800 just on storage, food, kitchen items...So much stuff that I needed to get, that I sold off 2 1/2 years ago when I moved back home. But, hey, it's all good...it's money well spent, and only spent once.   I'm starting to feel like an adult again...on my own! Working! Yay!   (now a date and/or social life would be nice...)

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Gris Gris Gumbo Ya Ya

I don't know why, but I love gumbo.   Ok, I know why exactly: it's a stew served with rice...it's a combination of flavors that is captivating. It's both spicy and savory. It's got both pork and chicken...well, ok, my version does, since I can't have any shellfish. A pinch of cayenne, a bit of fil

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Fun Fun Fun (?)

Decisions, decisions. What is a girl to do? I have choices for my weekend entertainment, and even choices regarding who to spend it with.   I'm dying to go to the beach...I haven't been all summer, although I did go in May. But it's not exactly beach weather: foggy, cold, windy. Actually, it's typical beach weather if we were in June. Oh, wait, this is July. Hmmmm...maybe not.   Part of me wants to go to stay home to work on a new project--doing voice overs on PowerPoints for work. Yeah, yeah, yeah, nerdy, but I'm trying to finish this project by the end of next week, and there is work to do. Besides, I don't even know if I can do this properly here at home--I mean, my colleague-in-the-know said I could, but I don't entirely know what I'm doing. Meh...it can wait until Monday.   I could meet up with a gentleman who wishes to take me out. The problem is that my Spidey-sense tingles just when I talk to him on the phone. You know the type, the ones who pretend like they're looking to build up a relationship, but all they really want is a roll in the hay. Sure, it'd be something to do, to meet up with Mr. Creepy, but I don't exactly want this guy picking me up...then he'd know where I live, and that's not something that a single girl gives up so quickly. Actually, I don't think I'd even want to meet up with him...no, he's just not my type. Ummmm...no, scratch that.   Another 'friend'--or, someone who would like very much to be closer than a friend--wants to meet up. But there's just something odd about him, something I can't put my finger on. Kinda like he's trying to emerge from his cocoon, but has no idea how to do it. Do I give the guy the chance? Well, errr...sounds like a bit of a project, and I'm a bit old for those. (No, really...I gave up on trying to change potential mating partners a LOOOONG time ago...it can't be done, and I don't really want people trying to change me.)   Oooh, with all this cool and foggy weather, I could go for a short hike! Sounds like a ton of fun, actually, and something that I've been trying to work myself up to. Yeah, that's the ticket! Now, which trail?....I'll save that to the morning.   Or...maybe a dinner/movie night? Hmmm...kinda low on cash right now. Then again, I do have a coupon for free ice cream at a decent local chain...perhaps, perhaps, perhaps. Especially if I can get someone to join me in the fun. But not Mr. Creepy, and probably not Mr. Shy Guy. I need someone who will be a bit livelier.   Then again...let's see what time I wake up tomorrow...I'm feeling like a good lie in would be a great thing. Yeah...that's about right. Ok, decision has been made...glad you guys could help me with that.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

 

Crash

There are certain sounds that hit when we're helpless to do anything except pray. Among them are the sounds of screeching tires directly behind you. It happened to me twice today. Both times--once going to work, the other coming home--I was stopped in traffic, not able to go anywhere. Both times I had a split second to look up at the rear-view mirror and gasp.   Both times the drivers swerved just in time to avoid me and go into the next lane. Accidents averted.   I thought about this for a while...there wasn't much I could have done, save for brace for impact. I'm sure most all of us have done it...you're driving, the brakelights in front of you instantly shine their warnings to all behind them...and for whatever reason you pick them up a hair late. You slam your foot (maybe even both feet) down onto the break pedal, hoping to be able to stop your vehicle in time. You swerve into the next lane--hopefully it's the emergency lane--and narrowly avoid disaster. You practically give yourself a heart attack...and you probably gave the person in front of you one, too.

docoflove1974

docoflove1974

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