Friday, February 29, 2008

Avoiding Completing My MBA Admissions Application

I promised myself that today I would complete my MBA admissions application but got derailed when they asked specific information about undergrad credit hours and such. In searching for my college transcripts I found some old Glamour Shots circa 1994 (which put me at 23). What was I thinking?!? What on earth was I thinking?!?!??

You'd think by age 23 I'd have been smarter than that! And look at the shirt I was wearing (it's a Glamour Shots shirt!). And what about that hair? Pose? Vacuous expression? I'm posed as if I just 'happened' to be sitting there with chin in hand, big hair, a flouncy shirt and a far-away look in my eye while somebody 'accidentally' snapped my picture.

This is so Napolean Dynamite.

Rally 'Round, Texas Girls!

I'm on a mission to get my friend M2K2 to move to Austin (she currently lives in San Francisco with her husband, daughter Makena and son Kessler). We met many years ago and she was the one who took a chance and gave me my first 'techie' job. She's awesome.

I'm trying to convince her that the girls in Texas are also awesome and that she would have an immediate group of friends if she moved here. So how 'bout we give her a big Texas Hello and visit this blog post? It's an adorable exchange between her and her three year-old daughter Makena (er...Makena is 3, right M2K2?)

This is Makena. She looks like she's up to something which I love!

But...aren't you with the campaign???

"Ring ring!"

"Ring ring!"

I always wait a few beats before answering my home phone because a smooth female voice will announce the caller after the second ring.

Oh, and for purposes of accuracy, it's actually "ringringringringringringringring-ringringringringringringringring" (I changed our ring tone to the opening strands of Ave Maria to tease Husband).

"Number not available" the phone tells me. I decide to answer it anyway 'cause I'm tired to talking to the dogs.

"Hello?!" I say all friendly-like.

Dead air. Uh oh--it's the politicians!

"Hello hello!" I say, still friendly.

"Uh..." a male voice stammers, "Hello--is Husband there?"

"No he is not! May I help you?"

"Oh...this is the Barack Obama campaign and we just wanted to talk to him."

"Oh cool! How are you guys doing? Been busy? Oh, hey--will Obama be back to have another rally in Austin?"

Melek and I were just musing about this the other day. I meant to look it up but forgot. How convenient of them to call.

"Um..." my buddy on the other end of the line isn't sure, I can tell. "Yes!" he says with conviction. "Yes he is!".



" you know when?"

"I sure do!" says the man.


"Can you tell me when?"

"I sure can! you hold on a minute?"

I briefly consider giving him a hard time over this, but hey, the sun is shining and the birds are singing and it's going to be in the 70's today. No need to disrupt all the happy energy flowing around.

My buddy comes back to the phone. " can get that on his website."

I am mildly dumbfounded which has rendered me speechless for the moment. I mean, if you're going to call and bug me (non-stop, I might add. Our phone rings constantly with these types of calls) at least help a sister out.

My silence gets to him. "Do you know what the website is?" he asks.

"No, I sure don't." I tell him.

"Oh, okay, well it's You can find the information about the rally there."

"Great thanks!" I hang up and immediately go my computer to look up the rally.

There's no rally.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Me and My Big Head

My darling friends just emailed us the pics from the ski trip and I thought I'd share them with you. Let's start with how I look when I first put on the jacket, shall we? (We're in a giant sled on our way to a mountaintop restaurant.) (That's not my hair, it's fur, but wouldn't it be funny if it were my hair?)

And here's how I look after traveling through a blizzard in a giant sled (note that my jeans are soaked up to my thighs):

If I look like I'm up to something in that picture, it's because I am. I was surreptitiously making a snowball which I then pelted at the photographer. He returned the favor by kicking snow in my face while I was making a snow angel. "You kicked snow in the face of a fallen angel," I declared, "God will punish you for this!"

He wasn't scared.

We went snowmobiling on the last day. It was miserable. I was colder than I'd ever been in my life. That's me, in the black-and-white with my face entirely covered up. I was doing the "Hook 'Em Horns" symbol, in case you couldn't tell (you can't). Something's wrong with an outfit that impedes the "Hook 'Em Horns" symbol. Something's even wronger with a place that forces you to wear an outfit that impedes the "Hook 'Em Horns" symbol. Oh, and my butt was wet from sitting on a snowmobile. Soaked through. Miserable. And, I had to use the restroom but there were only outhouses (and I refused to 'drop trou' and go outside). I had to wait several hours before I had access to a restroom, and it was a port-a-potty. Have you ever tried to avoid touching anything in a port-a-potty while wearing ski clothes? Miserable.

Here's us at the restaurant. We are warm. We are in front of a fire place. Fun, fun, fun!

This is me and my friend at a restaurant in Vail. We are happy because we are warm (and the music was great).

This is me and Husband and my friend after the first day of skiing. I am miserable because I am cold. I am hiding it well. I think, if you know me, you can detect the relief on my face that the day is over.

As the days wore on, my 'after ski' smile was more like a scowl. I think four days is too long in the cold for me. Next time, I'm hitting the slopes after 2 when it's half price. That way I'll only have two hours to ski. Perfect.

I think Husband's perception of me has changed. He nicknamed me "Tiny Whiney" on the trip. My friend's husband nicknamed me, "High Maintenance". Neither of these sound particularly flattering BUT...

...I bet they don't ask me to go skiing again! ;)

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

This is What I Wore While Flailing Down the Slopes

Compliments of my friend Megan, the original Snow Bunny, I wore this:

It's rather difficult to see around the hood and all, and you kind of blend into the mountain (esp. when it snows), but hey--suffer for fashion, right?

Oh, and there's absolutely no peripheral vision when you have the furry hood up. Did you know that peripheral vision is key when you're skiing? I did not.

I do now.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

My Whereabouts

Sorry you havn't heard from me in a while. I'm currently in Colorado doing this:

Thursday, February 14, 2008

My 15 Minutes? Oh Lord, I Hope Not!

"Baby, don't feel pressured to get home at 5 tonight. We probably won't eat until after 7." Ever the understanding wife, I pressed "send" and reflected on tonight's meal.

In truth, that text message was totally self-serving.

Here, let me explain.

Today has been a cacophony of catastrophes. Not really, I just wrote that for dramatic purposes. Today actually started off pretty well. After a peaceful night's sleep, I got up, read the paper and then dressed to go running with Le Pooch Grande. "There's no way I will run into anyone I know," I thought as I put one of my cheesy, plastic butterfly clips in my hair, "Who on earth would be at the lake this late in the morning?" I didn't even bother with makeup; I just wet my finger and strategically wiped around whatever was leftover from yesterday in a way that made my eyes look a little less tired and puffy. I donned my black running pants and hot pink tank top and off we went.

Forty-five minutes later and haggard after riding around in a convertible and a three mile run, I briefly considered going home to shower. "No--I should probably hit 'Hey Cupcake!' for tonight's dessert before the line gets too long. At least the line is outside so no one will notice my smell." It was 11:40 and 'Hey Cupcake!' wasn't even slated to open for another twenty minutes, but I'd been warned that the lines would be long today and didn't want to miss out on cupcakes tonight.

We pull up to the Airstream and the line is already 10 people deep. Le Pooch Grande and I settle into 11th position and prepare to wait.

That's when I spotted the camera man.

News 8 Austin was on site, filming the line (within minutes there were twenty additional people behind me). Then they scan the crowd for a sucker to interview. I hastily put on my sunglasses and become engrossed with my cell phone. In my peripheral, I see them heading my way.

"This can't be," I tell myself, "Surely they will take one look at my raggedy-a-- and pass me by." I look up to check and see if I'm right. They (camera man and reporter) stop dead in front of me.

"Are you specifically here for cupcakes for Valentine's Day?" she asks me.

"Um...yes." I reply, personality shining through.

"Great!" She gestures to the camera man and suddenly he's hoisting his camera up in preparation for filming. "Mind if we ask you a few questions?"

"Um...sure." I say (again with that awesome personality). I would feel like a jerk otherwise. Besides, showing up on a TV interview looking like hell is pretty damn funny!

I can't even remember what she asked me. All I could think about while I answered the questions was, "Dammit girl! You've got more personality than that! Stop answering like a drone. Smile! Smile! Stand up straight. Suck that gut in! Say something funny. Was that funny? Oh--she's not laughing, that wasn't funny. Is my right eyebrow all twisty and weird? It was twisty and weird this morning! Is this a high-def camera? Why didn't I fix my twisty eyebrow this morning?" And so on.

After that, I rode to Melek's and presented her with a Valentine's Day cupcake. She immediately took a bite out of it. This is why we are friends.

Off to the DVD store. I had to get Husband's Valentine's Day present and my research told me that I could find it right around the corner from 'Hey Cupcake!'

I stroll into the store and declare to the friendly guy at the counter, "Hey--this place smells good! Like a spa!" (it did).

"How can I help you?" he asks, smiling widely.

"I'm looking for MI-5 volume 2. I saw on your website that you have it in stock." I was delighted with myself for even finding a store that sells this video. It's a little obscure and I was kicking myself earlier for waiting until Valentine's Day to look for it.

"We do." he replied as he walked me over to the appropriate shelf.

I started scanning the selection and found what I wanted, but something seemed weird about the packaging. Whatever, I took it to the clerk.

"I'd like these!" I announced as I set the series of five videos down and pulled my purse down from my shoulder.

"Mmmm hmm." was lukewarm response as she turned to some shelves behind her.

"Oh! That's why the packaging looked so weird. It must have been a shell for the real deal here behind the counter. I guess a lot of people steal videos, or something." I thought to myself as I pulled out my wallet.

"I need your license." She looked at me expectantly.

Wait--this didn't make sense. Why would she need my license? She hadn't even rung up the sale yet. Are these videos x-rated, or something? I decided that it must be the rating or something so I pull my license out of my wallet.

"You are a member, aren't you?" She asks. Now she's borderline snotty.

"A member? Of what?" I ask.

She gives me the "Great, another stupid customer." face and says, "This is a video rental store. Did you think you were going to buy this, or something?"

Oh crap, oh crap, oh crap!

"Oh crap!" I say. "How could I be such a moron? I had no idea what this store was..."

Her smile doesn't reach her eyes. "Well did you want to rent these or just forget it? You'll have to join to do so."

I think quickly. Husband LOVES this "MI-5" series. He will stay up until 3 am on a work night watching them. I really want to get this for him and I can't show up empty-handed tonight. Worse still, I have no idea what else I would get him at this late hour. "I'll rent two of them," I decide, "that will give me time to order the series on Amazon and have it delivered."

Clerk's hard exterior actually softens a little and we get it squared away.

I shrug off the experience as I drive home. There are important things to take care of! Husband's flight should land any minute now and I still stink! I need to get into the shower, pronto!

A few minutes later, I turn into my driveway and press the button on my remote to open the garage door. Nothing happens. Huh. I try the other button. Nothing. Weird. I alternate pushing the only two buttons on the remote. Garage door stays closed.

"Stay here, stay." I tell Le Pooch Grande as I unfold myself from my car. This is so unlike my garage door. Perhaps it's my remote...

I go to the keypad attached to the door frame. I enter the code. Nothing. I enter it again. And again, and again, and again, and again. Weird. I grab Le Pooch and go through the gate to the front door. "No problem," I think to myself as we climb the front stairs, "I'll simply let us in with the key."

Oh no I will not. The key to the front door is no longer on my ring.

"G-d#%&*! husband!" I think to myself as I stare at my key ring, "he stole my key again!"

Husband has a weird habit of taking the key off my key ring whenever he needs to go for a run. The problem is, he doesn't put it back. Now I am locked out.

"Crap, oh crap!" I say for the second time today. Husband is due home at any minute, it's Valentine's Day and I stink and look like crap. What the hell am I going to do?

I scan the list of friends who have a key to our house; there are none. Wait--there's the Shetland Pony door!

When Husband and I enclosed the porch last summer, he insisted on the largest dog door ever made. The contractors laughed when they saw its monstrous size and dubbed it the 'Shetland Pony Door'. Today, Husband was redeemed.

"Move over!" I instructed the dogs as I twisted my torso sideways and climbed through the dog door. The dogs leaped all around me, thrilled that I was one of them.

"Now what?" I thought as I pulled myself to my feet and glanced around the porch (panting, I might add). I cursed myself for locking all of the interior doors and windows last night. I jiggled a window but it wouldn't budge. I threw my purse down and surveyed the contents that spilled out. My insurance card! Surely it was thin enough to unlock the windows.

Fancying myself a 007, I slipped the card up into the window frame. It stuck tight. I pushed left, right, up--it was stuck. This was a stupid idea.

I opened the porch doors and made my way to the side yard back to the driveway. "I'm going to stink and look ugly for Husband on Valentine's Day." I thought morosely. I walked up to the garage door and entered the unlock code once, twice, five times. Damn door wouldn't open so I gave it a swift kick.

"F-you door!" I thought as I climbed into my car. I figured I might as well go buy the rest of tonight's groceries in my stinky, ugly state. I fretted over not looking my best for Husband on Valentine's Day as I reattached the garage door remote to the car visor. A movement out of the corner of my eye caught my attention.

Oh look--the garage door is opening!

I stared in stunned silence as the garage door climbed upward. Sensing a trick, I hastily pushed the button on my remote to see if it would close. It did. Oh man, I am IN!

I raced inside the house and batted the dogs' heads around in celebration. I ran up the stairs to the shower. I estimated that Husband should be home in 10 minutes. I can be showered and sexy in 10 minutes, I thought.

Then the power went out.

I missed a beat, then continued. "Showers don't need electricity," I rationalized, "Unless you shower too long and run out of hot water."

I took the fastest shower of my life. Periodically I would notice that the blue light on my electric toothbrush would go on, then off signifying that there was an intermittent power issue. It all made sense. The garage door failed due to a power issue!

After my shower I grabbed my phone and saw that Husband had sent me a text message. "I have to go straight to the office," he wrote, "I'll try to be home at 5."

Which leads me to the present. Between then and now I decided to play "Valentine's Day Fairy" wherein I buy Valentines for people, put them on their doorstep, ring the doorbell and hide. This is great fun and a good excuse to play 'Ding Dong Ditch'.

Trust me, try it. People are so fundamentally delighted by surprises on their front porch.

Anyway, I make my way home and start cooking dinner. This is where it gets bad, of course. I mean, I *think* I know the recipe but when I review it again I realize that I was supposed to marinade the filet mignon for five hours. FIVE HOURS? It's five o'clock already!!!! On this schedule we'll be having dinner at 10pm. I do the math, decide that the author of the recipe is being conservative and set the marinade to boil. At the same time I text Husband and let him know that it's okay to come home late.

'Cause I'm cool like that.

Post Note: My TV debut made it to the local airwaves this evening. I'll post a link if it ever gets uploaded on News 8's website. In short, the clip shows me talking about how I'm buying cupcakes to surprise my husband for Valentine's Day. Husband sees the broadcast before I get a chance to present the cupcakes.

Of course he does.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Fun With Sports Illustrated

Despite what I'm about to report on my day, I really did get a lot done; however, studying wasn't one of them. Nor was working out. In fact, my day started like this:

7:58 am - Wake up. Stretch. Go back to sleep.

8:37 am - Wake up again. Roll over. Marvel at how much better I sleep when Husband is on a business trip (he's in California right now). Think about getting up. Think about how when I do get up, I'm only going to spend 15 minutes on email. Tops.

11:45 am - Finish with email. Finish hour-long phone conversation with friend Kelly about email. Decide to go running.

11:47 am - receive call from friend "M" wondering where I am. I was supposed to meet her for lunch. In my defense, two days ago Outlook crashed, it still won't launch and my reminders don't pop up anymore. I thought our lunch date was tomorrow.

12:05 pm - arrive at restaurant harried and full of apologies. Eat a heavy, gooey Mexican entree to make up for the run that I didn't go on.

2:00 pm - Go here and pick up a treat for another friend (and myself, I won't lie):

Okay, the timeline stops here because we need to talk about this. I mean, seriously, "Hey Cupcake!"??? Is this not the GREATEST PLACE ever!? It's a shiny, silver Airstream in the middle of a dirt parking lot in South Austin. The cupcakes are phenomenal. We had the red velvet ones today. Tomorrow I'm getting chocolate for our Valentine's Day dessert. This is the happiest place on earth!

Okay, back to the timeline.

2:30 - 4:00 Blah, blah...bought groceries...blah, blah.

4:40 pm - Realized that I promised to fix the wiring mess in our master bedroom closet while Husband was gone. Realized he was coming home tonight, did the math and figured out that I'd better get cracking! A little history: nine years ago when the house was built, apparently some children were hired to come in and wire it. I am sure it was children because no adult professional would have left it in this state:

I've been vowing to rewire it and, since I am running out of home projects, felt that it was once again time to prove my worth as a housewife (lest Husband decide that I'm bored and should go back to work). One hour later, the wiring looked like this:

And I looked like this:

Something about splicing wires gives me 'Crazy Hair'. I don't know why.

5:40 pm - Played live Tetras with my 2-seater car and my three dogs. I won. Took them to the lake for a walk to celebrate. On the way, I ignored the dirty looks I received from my fellow drivers for cramming three dogs into a 2-seater. Dogs don't mind our little Tetras game; in fact, they were thrilled. Here's proof:

From a different angle:

6:05 pm - Struck up a conversation with a woman sitting on a park bench. Turns out she's from the DC area (which I suspected). Spent one hour trying to convince her that she should move to Austin when her husband retires.

7:05 pm - hightail it out of there when her husband shows up.

7:12 pm - get home and find this waiting for Husband in the mail:

7:13 pm - Turn it into this:

Time to stop the timeline again for a little sidebar. I seem to have some sort of weird affinity for pasting heads on other people's bodies. Several years ago I pasted a coworker's head on the body of one of the guys from this site (sort of Not Safe for Work) and emailed it to a few of the other guys in the office (only five of us worked there). He was furious. It looked completely real. I never did that again.

7:34 pm - Leafed through said magazine and found a cheap, generic Valentine's Day card glued to the pages. Why is there a generic Valentine's Day card glued inside the pages of Sports Illustrated? Is it just in case the guy is so distracted by the bikini clad models that he forgets to buy his woman a card? Why did the swimsuit issue of SI come out the day before Valentine's Day? Is it to save the guys money on expensive dinners and chocolate since women everywhere are no longer eating?!?

7:38 pm - Played a trick on husband lest he decide to give me that card:

(If you give me this card, I will know that you tore it out of Sports Iillustrated. xoxo Your Wife)

8:00 pm - frantically washed two sunroom windows and vacuumed the house so that Husband will think I worked *very hard* all day.

8:30 pm - Husband sends a text to say that he won't be home until 2 am. Husband is furious. He never gets furious. I briefly reconsider the tricks I played on him.

8:31 pm - The tricks stand.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

I am not allowed to post anything until I finish studying today

Last night I stayed up until all hours watching CNN's videos and looking at Facebook. What a serious time drain. I am forcing myself to be productive before I do anything else (like post to my blog) (you can see that I am already failing miserably). I've been MIA (ha ha, those are my initials, ha ha, that's a double-entendre!) because the weather has been so nice that I've been mostly outside trying to absorb all of that vitamin, uh...B? Or is it C? B2? Anyway, I'm trying to enjoy the weather before it gets nasty. This *is* February, after all, and we could still have an ice storm.

Also, I don't have one single interesting thing to write about. I'll make up something good while I'm studying, and then I'll post!

Meanwhile, is there anyone out there who might like to send a postcard to my little sister's kindergarten class? They're learning about the postal system. We're looking for some states other than VA and TX such as, for instance, NC! Or...CA! Do I hear an OH?

Here's the mailing info if you choose to accept this assignment:

Golden Pond School, Kindergarten Class, 43940 Farmwell Hunt Plaza, Ashburn, VA 20147


Author's Edit: I forgot that my initials are MAI, not MIA (thanks, Travis Oaks HOA, whoops, I mean, Melek). I guess all that engraved wedding stuff screwed me up good! MIA is cooler, though, so I'm sticking with it!

Sunday, February 3, 2008

This Isn't Helping My Cause

For some reason, Husband refuses to let me get a fourth dog. Even when I told him I would name it "Fuzzball".

I don't understand...

Friday, February 1, 2008

Thank God Someone Can

According to Steinmart, I'm saveable.