Saturday, December 29, 2007

Lint by any other name

Let me just state, fluff that gets up and walks away is a spider. And given my irrational fear of spiders, I'd like to make it clear that non-mobile fluff on the edge of the tub when I'm having a soak with a drink and candles is my preference. Always. You don't need to know everything that happened. Suffice it to say it was...not unexpected.

Yes, I know that spiders won't kill me kidnap my kids and ruin the laundry. But it's an irrational fear. If they could do all of that they it would be a totally rational fear. But they can't. YET!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Rain of unfairness

Rudyard Kipling wrote:
The rain it falleth on the just and the unjust fella,
But mainly on the just because
The unjust steals the just's umbrella

Or as near as makes no difference. That is how my brain remembers it from elementary school, anyway. So don't go and tell me how wrong I've got it because that isn't the point.

The point is, I think I'm too old to still believe that the world somehow makes things come out fair. I find myself occasionally moderately surprised to find someone who is "unjust" doing really well and the just...just sucking, I guess. And then I am really surprised to find myself surprised by that. I mean, I'm not six. Not even sixteen, I know that the world isn't fair. And yet I still manage to hear myself saying in aggrieved tones "but that's not FAIR".

So where does this come from? Human nature or crazybarefeet nature?

Friday, December 07, 2007

Because you know what I can do

I'm getting used to all the ways people used to sign their letters: cordially yours, your humble servant, your obedient servant (as if), but the one that comes up occasionally (because I work with historical documents) is this:

Dear Mr. Doe;
Blah blah blah

Believe Me,

John McJohn

I love it. It sounds vaguely threatening. Like it really matters that you pay attention to what his letter is saying. I think I may adopt it as part of my email security signature. Yes I will. Believe me.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

To laugh, to cry or to murder?

I am learning how to knit. I have, as all learners do, made scarves. Two only, which is pretty good in the view that I've heard of people that spend their lives making nothing but scarves.

I made a little blanket for my girl and months ago (maybe even a year?) I started something called a couch cuddler. Still really simple, as in all honesty in the picture in the book it looks like..well...a scarf. Six feet long and two feet wide but still. It's meant to go over the knees of people sitting on a couch watching a movie.

If you've read this blog for a while and remember things, you'll recall that I started and re-started a number of times. Then I came within one ball - so to speak - of finishing and decided that the mistakes would make me crazy so I undid it all and started again.

I almost finished during the Grey Cup game, but I was short having enough wool to cast off. When the kids came home, A. found one tiny little bit left over, almost exactly what I needed.

The kids left for a week at their dad's yesterday, so I got a movie from the library to watch while things cooked in the oven. (Two cakes, and they have long baking times), with the plan to finish off the scarf of great hugeness.

I got home yesterday to two very happy puppies. Two puppies who had been playing with the knitting. Which had caught on a corner of the board we put up to keep them out of half of the house. I would have paid good money for a camera at that point. There were lenghts of wool interspersed with bits of the scarf that were still together ...everywhere. Over the couch, over the bookcase in the hallway, under the coffee table, under and ON (?) the dining room table, over the dog cage and to go with it all small fluffy scraps of wool floating about.

The thing is, they looked so pleased with themselves. (The dogs, not the scraps of wool. The scraps of wool just mocked me in very typical wool-like tones). I've had them get into garbage and the don't come to the door when I get home and as soon as I'm through the door they both try to fit in the kennel. Don't tell me they don't know when they're in trouble! So clearly they know eating garbage=trouble. Too bad I didn't tell them that destroying knitting also equals trouble.

I gathered it all up and unravelled what I could but there is one entire ball missing from all the bits that were too useless to save. In all honesty I think I was as close to laughing as I was to crying. But hey, I guess I just start again, yes? Yes. Nil carborundum illegitimi.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Getting into my Pants

I was walking towards the elevator at work this morning (yes, stairs are the better choice but not when you're carrying a pot of tea and a precariously balanced plate of hot cinnamon buns) when I realized there was something pinching the back of my thigh. And not in a good way, I might add.

Not wanting to disrobe in the elevator...
OK, fine, not being allowed to disrobe in the elevator I continued on the journey put everything down on the first desk I came to and went to the womens washroom to see what the deal was.

Turns out there was a needle - a NEEDLE! - in my leggings. Leggings that I just bought, from a package that I opened, took leggins out of and put on. No stops, no resting in the sewing basket, nothing. The non-existent sewing basket that is. That line certainly implied that I sew, and do it in an organized manner whereas the truth is, M. is right: it's a pity I can't bake a dress, because then we'd be covered. Amazing that she things so highly of my baking skills, sad that she knows that I'll never be able to sew. Not even the hem of a towel. In my defence, my first sewing project in high school was a bathing suit, and the second - and most DEFINITELY FINAL - choice was a tartan skirt. Why the teacher let me start with something so demoralizing is beyond me. Unless she didn't like asking me for help once in the cooking half of home economics. Whatever the reason, that bathing suit made me anti-sewing forever. Except for buttons. If you held a gun to my head, threaded the needles and asked really nicely (despite the gun) I will sew a button back on to the garment it ran away from.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Not Smoking. And NOT the boys room.

There I was, minding my own business doing what one does in the bathroom when there is a knock at the door, the squeak of the door hinge and a GUY"S voice saying "hello?"

Good grief. What does one say? C'mon in and light a shuck? "Occupado? What the hell do you want? I mean, I like to be left in peace. I hate it when women talk in the bathroom but I have to say this is worse.

Friday, November 16, 2007

He's off sick today.

So there I am on the desk - or to be exact, at the desk - when the phone rings. Given that I'm being paid to do a number of things including answering the phone if it rings, I dutifully pick it up:

Government Department X, Jane Doe speaking.
Uh, hi. I'm looking for death.

So many things I wanted to say, not one of them appropriate. I'm counting it as a big plus that I didn't even laugh, let alone offer a snippet of witty reparte. This time.

Friday, November 09, 2007

I don't know, are monkies linen?

My most favourite question from a food site I go to:
Are eggs meat?

Thursday, October 25, 2007

More of a clog

As opposed to a writing block, that is. I decided that all I would ask of myself today would be a sentence. One single sentence. Surely no matter how stuck I felt, one sentence was not too much to ask? I mean I'm not blocked I've merely slowed down.

So, I went for a walk instead of lunch and...ended up changing "they will" to "they'll". So not only did I not finish a new sentence, I didn't even start a new sentence. I edited something already in existence and for all I know tomorrow I'll change it back. Yup, I'm sure a great success as a novelist.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Two brains that don't think as one.

I have two brains. Life would be best if I only used the smart one, but sometimes the not-so-smart one supersedes the decisions the smart brain makes.

I dropped a pie this morning, hot out of the oven. My dumb brain said "grab that, you don't have time to make another", so I did. And even as I flung it - yes, I used the word flung intentionally and correctly - onto the counter my smart brain said " just came out of the oven, idiot. You'll get burned." And it was right too. Because both brains had a good point to make, really. But overall it made for a poor morning. And this on top of deciding that the brownies I'd made the night before weren't perfect enough to sell, so I had to make a second batch. And then I realized that I didn't have anything for the pot-luck at work. So before my day in the office even started I had made a pie, a pan of brownies, chocolate-espresso ganache, chocolate fudge frosting and three loaves of bread. Grant you they were flatbreads and the dough was done in the early hours of the morning so all I did was shape and bake but still...this makes for a very long day.

Creative Writing in the Business World

First you need the background to this. Actually, you don't need to read it but I want to tell it so I am.

There is something out there in the kitchen gadged world known as a Hot Stone Cooker. Some brands refer to it as a hot stone grill. The thing works by super-heating a marble slab with is then placed on a metal rack with to alcohol burners underneath. The stone gets hot enough to cook steak, shrimp etc.

I've wanted one for a while, but I've waited because I know that I will eventually find one at something like a garage sale. I know three people who own them and not one of them has used it. Why would I want something that seems like a good idea and yet never gets used? Because it looks nice and with the burners on (and the stone not heated) it would make an excellent hot plate for warm appetizers. And I do cater a fair amount of things that require a hot plate or its marble equivalent.

So I found one, on Sunday. Yeah! There are directions about how to heat it, what to do to not ruin it and when it is ready to cook on the instructions are:
"you are now ready to cook with your new hot stone cooker. Use your imagination and creativity to create gourmet meals for friends and family. If both of these are lacking, here are some recipes" (italics are mine)

I can't decide if they're serious and don't see that that could be viewed as a teeny bit insulting or if they're just a business that has a sense of humour. Regardless, it made me laugh on a dim sort of day.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

I should be in a circus

I'm willing to admit that what got me into this situation may be seen as klutziness. But what got me out was so skilled I should be in a circus.

I wore a skirt yesterday (which I pretty much always do: I'm still waiting for the day that daily wear is a giant t-shirt and underwear. With the addition of socks in the winter), a very long skirt. Almost ankle length. And shoes with heels.

Leaving the house requires going down three steps, something I've never had trouble with before. Ok, not often. FINE! Not more than a dozen times. A baker's dozen. This time, on the very top step - so really, I hadn't even started going down yet - the heel of one shoe caught the hem of the skirt, tripping me. Given my general lack of co-ordination*, you'd think, wouldn't you, that this whole thing would have ended up with torn skirt and bloody hands and knees. You'd be wrong!

With crazily cartwheeling arms - and yes, a squeal of astonishment - I managed to negotiate all three steps without falling. I'm pretty sure the whole thing was entertaining, but the thing is I managed it. It was neither pretty nor graceful but it worked. I did it. Ha!

* Except when ballroom dancing. A friend of mine suggested once that when I walk I hum a song in my head - I'm quite graceful when dacning (depending on the dance). I tried that, but I ended up walking downtown practicing the Latin Hip movement. Which is fine if you're a hooker, not so good if you're not.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Tears or toughness?

So what is better when enraged? Streaming tears of anger or buying a boxing thingy - shut up, you know what I mean - that I can punch at will with no harm to anyone?

Free Porn. Intentional?

I learned a whole new meaning for "neighbourhood watch" last night. Driving home from the mall with A. (and let me tell you the people that shop at Safeway between nine and ten at night are...odd. Myself included, I'm sure) and driving along Grant there was a house with a large screen tv on the far wall on, and their curtains were open. Being pitch black out it was easy to see what was on. Giant naked people. I've no idea if it was intentional or if they're just idiots and don't realize that people can see their tv but I'm guessing all it will take (other than a complaining neighbour) will be a car accident when someone fails to negotiate the curve. What with the distraction and all.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Silly Stats

Or perhaps just poor thinking. Guessing? I don't know, but here's the thing:

I have a tea book. Actually, I have a few, but the one I was reading last night made an interesting and mathematically unlikely comment. Their recommendation was to never buy tea in bags, as the tea is pretty much the sweepings off the tea sorting floor after 90 percent of the tea has been sorted and sold. Later in the book she says that 95 % of the tea that people drink is from tea bags. So...ten percent of the tea sold makes 95 percent of the tea we buy. I think that what is really happening is that a lot of the loose tea sold is sold to companies who blend and bag it. Butthat's not the way she's written it. The way she has it 10 percent of tea grown is sold into magic bags that somehow end up accounting for 95 percent of the tea we drink. Maybe there are giant warehouses somewhere filled with really good tea, all going to waste. Or maybe I should not think so much. But I have to. Sorry, but as the song says I don't know why it is but my brain works all the time.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Losing it

I thought I was losing it a few weeks ago when I asked the dogs, as I left the house, if the Food Network was an acceptable TV choice for them. Forget that all three of us believe that they like to have the tv on when we're gone (we could be wrong on that - perhaps they spend their time having philosophical discussions), there I was asking them what they preferred.

That, however, pales in respect to last night. I was working on my writing and stuck between deciding whether one character should be a badger or a hedgehog. I'm particularly fond of hedgehogs and was leaning in that direction when this thought entered my brain:

"Hmmm. Hedgehog. Would anyone even listen to a hedgehog? I think a badger would be better, they are a far more reasonable and creditable creature."

So either this is going to be the most awesome fantasy story or my friends will eventually have to stage an intervention and haul me away.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Well, I'd always wondered.

This is probably something everyone else learned in elementary school (learned and remembered; for all I know I learned it too and it slipped away during the night), but I was thrilled (and you thought I had no life!) to find out that:

Periods and commas go inside quotation marks, colons and semicolons go outside. Question marks and exclamation points can go in either place (which would explain why I can never remember which is correct).

That's it. That's all I've learned today. Oh, and that this job sucks. Except I think I already knew that.

Or maybe I'll just run away

It's a good thing that jail as a deterrent works for me. Because robbery (of a bank, for funds) and arson (of the office, just because) are looking mighty appealing this morning. Hope Y'all are having a better day.

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Lastest in Word in Dieting

There I am in Safeway, safely doing Safeway type things when I turn the corner and end up next to two women who could easily be part of the cast of the Hills by the way their dressed and coiffed.

Both thin (duh!), but one thin to the point of gaunt. Yes, I'm overweight, but that doesn't mean I don't know when someone is TOO thin. Anyway...her friend turns to her and says "how did you get so thin?". Now, I'm kinda curious. I mean, maybe it is something I can do and then stop before you can see the knobs of my spine. Her answer?

"I only eat when I'm drunk".

Oh. Never mind then.


I'm pretty cool with being single. Most of the time. And time really is a big part of the issue - job and a half, two kids, two dogs a bunny and a house. Where would I find the time?

Perhaps, though, being single isn't the best thing when YOUR OWN CHILD says "you should go on a date, mom." Oh my boy - always my best interests at heart.

Monday, September 24, 2007

They need a better plan.

If my co-worker's are trying to kill me they need a better plan than having a precariously balanced box in the stack area fall on my head. Because it didn't even hurt, let alone injure. Sadly, I did shriek. Because I was listening to music with earphones on and it scared the bejeebers out of me. So I am bejeeber-less. And somewhat embarassed.

Fair Warning

Hurt me and I'll get over it. Hurt my kids and I will hunt you down, vivisect you, spit on the remains and leave you out in the cold unburied and probably not even missed.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Good 'n Bendy

Did you know that if you're about to be late for work and your left hand is stuck in a ring on your key chain it is possible to drive to work (so as not to be late) with your left hand hanging from your key the whole way? Even if you have a manual transmission.

I know what you're thinking, but it getting one key off a key chain isn't easy when you're one-handed.

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

New Office, New Rules

Yes, I have moved offices. Again. Same company, different space. I fully expect to be moved again within the next year.

This is my first day in the new space and I've learned a few things. For instance; yes, the fire door can be opened without any alarms going off. And yes, if you put a file folder in the door where it latches it doesn't lock behind you. However...those two facts are irrelevant given that there is no handle on the outside of the door. So if one wants to take a break and go stand outside you have to prop the door open, or walk around the whole building barefoot in order to go in the front door, which is what I had to do. Yes, barefoot. Why go stand on the green grass if you have shoes on?

I love Lunch

I find it odd that the work day seems better if I have a great lunch to look forward to. Even better is a day when I have supper simmering away in a slow cooker at home.

Maybe I'm thinking about food too much. But let me tell you in the grand scheme of eating properly - well balanced and nutritious - thinking and planning are essential. I'm looking forward to the arrival of soup season. Not that I'm not enjoying the warm weather, though :)

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Hit Me Baby One More Time

The muse has hit. I mean REALLY hit. Everything just sort of exploded in my brain. I am now a writing maniac. Can't stop, because I don't know when the muse will leave, but in the meantime...this is AWESOME.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Dogs from Hell

And I don't mean just mine! Although yes, last night I would have happily given them away to anyone who asked. Without even giving the new owners any warning. Buyer beware and all that.

Although, to be fair to the dog that ate a stack of crepes, is it her fault, or the fault of the boy who left said stack on a plate on the edge of a counter? A bit of both, I think. But the boy I'm keeping.

Anyway, that said I stepped into the breach on Friday for friends who needed one moment of dog sitting. Or at least I TRIED to step into the breach.

Tall boy and I went over to their house to let the dogs out, because M was away and Lyn was on a drunken cruise somewhere. The Love Boat? Maybe, I don't remember. Boat, disco, black light. That's what I remember.

So over to dogville we go, letting ourselves in the back door. So, naturally the dogs bark their fool heads off. You'd think they'd be saying "yeah! we get to go and poop!" but apparently they were saying "intruder alert! intruder alert!".

So open the door and invite them out. No deal.

We go well into the house, let them figure out who we are and make them go out. No deal.

We sit quietly on the couch with the back door open so they can relax enough to go outside. No deal.

We go to the front door, so we are not standing between them and the freedom of the back yard. No deal.

We try to herd them outside. No deal.

We try to bribe them outside. No deal.

We make sure they have food and water, and try again to make them go outside. No deal.

And then, in a moment of craziness - because I really don't want them pooping in the house - I decide to pick them up, take them outside, attach leashes and take them for a walk. This, apparently, was a big deal. Tantamount to mudering their owners. Because Monty bit me. Bit me, the little monster! And I'm just trying to help them out. Didn't break the skin but left a mark, and made me decide I'd had enough.

My apologies to B and L. Monty looked totally ready to bite again, and Madison was thinking of joining in. I did my best.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Not so crazy after all

I wish that someday we could find out what people with mental issues are thinking. We occasioanlly see special needs people here due to one of the companies in the building. As I was working away this morning, there was a girl outside my window waiting for her mom. Beautiful day to be outside, can't blame her one bit. And then I noticed what she was doing: painting the leaves on one of the smaller trees.

Totally interesting - I would love to know why she is doing this, and if it is as much fun to do as she makes it look.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Pointless Warnings

I am finding it inordinately humorous that one of the things I read on Thursdays always concludes with "you are not authorized to read this page". Yes, concludes with. Tiny print at the bottom of the page.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


I mis-read the title of an earlier post. Thought it said naked flan. Which isn't a bad idea when you think about it. I was just concerned because I had no recall of naked custard at all. I'm ok now. Pretty much.

Naked Fan

For a blog entitled sex and the hamlet, there is an awful lot of nudity and a total absence of sex. Which is how it is going to be, I'm afraid. There are things one just does not discuss in public.

Nudity, though - given the ridiculous temperatures we're suffering from, there is going to have to be a lot of discussions on the topic of nakedidity.

As a side note, now that I've mentioned the heat, I am yet again wishing that the dress code for a day at the office was undies and a big T-shirt. I would even agree with the addition of socks, once the snow starts to fly. But I digress. My apologies.

I just wanted to tell you that no matter how quickly you go from hot shower to lying on the bed with a fan running on high, you still can't fall asleep before your body figures 0ut that the feeling of coolness was just an illusion.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Naked Delivery

Someone in a delivery van was trying to park in my space when I came back to the office from lunch today. I went over to them to tell them that one of the spaces was free because a co-worker is on vacation leave today. What I didn't count on was having to add "and please put some clothes on".

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Off to Ascot.

Apparently I learned nothing about buying what I don't need. You know some of my weaknesses, but did you know I love hats? Because I do. I have a small collection of usefull winter hats, and one usefull out-in-the-garden summer hat.

I also have what could almost be classified as a Victorian cartwheel hat. I wore it once. But it only cost me a buck (because who in their right minds buys a cartwheel hat these days?), so that is ok. It sits on a shelf in my closet because that is the only place it will fit.

I also had two totally awesome summer hats. The type you wear to tea with the queen or to Ascot. One I bought in Quebec on a visit home - how can you go to Quebec and not buy something haute couture? - the other I bought in Sidney, British Columbia. Because the store was closing and it was an amazing deal!

I had I have three. Because yesterday I bought a blue hat in the same class as the first two. Because one of the hats I have is black, and the other is cream. So I needed a blue one, right? And it was about a third of the cost of what a hat usually costs, fancy hats being notoriously expensive.

So now I have three Sunday-go-to-meeting hats. The queen has yet to invite me to tea, Taste of Regina no longer exists (the only place one can wear such a hat in public) and I can't afford Ascot. I'm going to have to start wearing the hats to church. Might as well go whole hog and get a pair of short white gloves. If one doesn't have to time travel to 1945 to find a pair.

Friday, July 13, 2007

Huzzah for Me

Working partly with the public as I now do I have discovered something: I'm a hit with the old guys. Old guys who apparently think it is hip to say things like "now what's a pretty gal like you working here for?"

I'd have a long line of beaux if I was interested in old guys and skinny creepy young socially inept guys.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Still not title ability. Perhaps I should look into that. But first mysteries first. And the mystery I want to solve is the puzzle of the water in the bathroom.

In one of the two stalls in the women's bathroom (yes, it is relevant that it is not the men's room) there is water droplets all over the floor. I'm assuming it is water and not anything more unpleasant because the entire wall facing the toilet is also covered in drops of liquid. There is nothing on the ceiling. Nothing on any of the other walls. Nothing on the toilet tank or seat. Just the floor and the one wall. So what is going on?

My supervisor (because I told the two women in the office next to the bathroom. How could I not?) says that "toilets just spray sometimes". I'm having a hard time believeing that. And I don't really want to believe it either. Bidets spraying yes, toilets no.

Any ideas? thoughts?
I dont' seem to be able to type a title for this post. Which is perhaps a good thing, all things considered.

I thought that I was ok with being single - particularly when I listen to some of the stories that married/attached friends tell. But it has occured to me that I think I should go out on a date or two to save my sanity. And what has made me question my sanity you ask? I was re-filing photographs at work and found myself thinking "Gee, Forget is a bit of a fox, isn't he?".

Great, the guys been dead how long? 102 years? Yeah, I need to get out more.

Saturday, June 30, 2007

Why you shouldn't be single.

It's a good idea to have a partner in life. Not just for the ususal benefits, but because when - and it will happen - you get a splinter in your eye, you have someone who can pull it out for you. It is hard to see the thing in your eye when you have...well, a thing in your eye.

I will also take this time to note that A. is more squeamish than I thought.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Old McDonald had a Farm

Wednesday night was a very bizarre night. The people across the alley and one over from us had a party. An outdoors, loud music loud/people party. Until at least midnight. I know it was still on at midnight because I got out of bed to see who, exactly, was living la vida loca on a week night at such high volume. And then I got scared on the way to the kitchen when I ran into my son who was leaving the kitchen with a giant snack. He was wearing a t-shirt and boxers. What he was wearing is relevant to this, ok? Deal with it.

So I went back to bed and eventually fell asleep. Only to wake up at five and discover that somehow, in the night, my daughter had come into my room, as had both dogs, as had my son. Who was, as it happens, completely dressed, right down to his socks and shoes. Does he remember getting dressed? No. Does he remember coming to my room? No. does my daughter? No. did I wake up for any of this? No. Do three people and two dogs fit comfortable on one bed? Decidedly no.

Anyway…time to get up and cook. First things first, though, so I let the dogs out. And there, on the lawn, was an egg. A regular bought-at-Safeway type chicken egg. So I went outside and looked back at the house. Had it been egged? No. Were there any other eggs? No. Did either child know anything about said egg? No. Were there any eggs missing from the six I’d bought the night before? No. We have lots of theories but until this morning no answers.

And this morning? What was the answer that occurred to me this morning? Nothing occurred to me. But there was a chicken in the back yard this morning. A regular farm-type chicken. So the egg thing is probably answered. Definitely answered, and in a fairly typical way for my bizarre life. Can’t wait to see what the weekend has to offer.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

and a triple by-pass to go.

So I thought that the whole deep-fried Mars bar was first on the list of things that are stupidly bad for your heart*. However...there are people out there extolling the virtues of frying Kispy Kreme doughnuts in butter. Yes, doughnuts that are already fried in oil and subjected to a waterfall of glaze, fried in butter until the sugar caramalizes. Craziness.

And because there will be those of you who must try this, here ya go:
Step 1: Ingredients
Krispy Kreme donuts are very unique donuts, so you need to do whatever you can to get them. If you don't use Krispy Kreme donuts, then I can't vouch for the outcome of the taste. To make this dish, you will need the following:
Krispy Kreme Donut
Butter (as much as you want — does it really matter at this point)
Step 2: Warm Skillet, Add Butter
Turn on the heat to somewhere between Medium to Medium-High. Add the butter, and wait until it's completely melted before proceeding to Step 3.
Step 3: Add Donut
As soon as the butter begins to bubble, add the donut. To get maximum butter coverage, flip the donut and make sure each side is thoroughly covered.
Next, take a spatula and start flattening the donut. The best way to do this is to flatten the donut, wait at least 30 seconds, flip the donut and repeat.
Step 4: Remove and Eat
Remove the donut when it starts to have a caramel color. Do not confuse this with burnt.
Let it stand for about 1-2 minutes to allow it to cool. When you cut the donut with a fork, the donut should be crispy on the outside. Enjoy!

*Yes, of course there are things that are bad for your heart in a non-stupid way. Saganaki, for instance. Cheese dipped in egg and flour, fried in butter and flamed with Ouzo? Of course it's bad for you, but it isn't stupid. It's cheese.

Sometimes they really are blonde

So the smoking bathroom talkers* struck again - describing (in detail even their ob-gyn's shouldn't hear ) their sex lives. It was almost worth listening to, though, to hear them questioning one of the three about some guy she just met. Her first line was:
"Well, he is either gay... or he isn't gay". And yes, she was blonde.

*No, they don't smoke there, but they go in their to re-perfume themselves after each cigarette break. Of which there are a ten to fifteen a day. Between the smokes and the bathroom I'm pretty sure they work half time.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Steppin' Out

So I thought that it would be nice if today went smoothly, given that I am going out tonight. And I don’t mean out with kids, I mean OUT out. Grown ups, in a bar. And not just women – women and men! A mixed group of people going out doing something vaguely grown-up like.

The going smoothly plan died when I stepped slightly off balance going onto the step into the back yard. Which ended up with a sprained ankle (but I can walk on it, so how bad can it be?), a tear in the pants I was wearing, a cut on that leg and really muddy hands. New outfit, another start to the day.

And now I am at my desk searching for band-aids and some sort of disinfectant because I caught my finger on something sharp in the photo drawer. But that is now ok too.

So – third thing needs to happen (if it is going to happen) BEFORE I go out and have a nice relaxing evening. Because that would be nice, yes?

Monday, June 04, 2007

Empty Space, here on Earth

What kind of a world is it when I open up the news and the top story is "Paris Hilton starts Jail Sentence"? Is that what we've become? This madness that says tell me more about celebrities, and don't try to slip any actual news in there?

I know, I shouldn't be shocked but I am.

Tuesday, May 29, 2007

Clyde and Phyllis

When I was little I used to listen to a record called Clyde and Phyllis. It was a musical about an ant and an elephant falling in love. A potentially tragic love, because, as the song says "an ant and an elephant just can't wed, for one little hug and Phyllis would be dead".

The album is not available anywhere now. Not on CD, not on vinyl. Not even on vinyl on ebay! As it turns out, however, I still have my copy. Which is amazing in and of itself, but the best part, is that even as I type this my album is in the sound and moving image department being recorded onto CD. So the story is not lost!

And what happens to the terribly groovy Clyde and the lovely Phyllis? Clyde decides to be an astronaut to get over his broken heart when the man in the moon tells him he and Phyllis should live in space together. He and Phyllis can live weightlessly in space, happy forever. Or for the nanosecond before they're dead, what with no oxygen and all. But hey, it is a kids album, we weren't supposed to be thinking about things like that!

All in all, I am thrilled. Which is perhaps an indication of my need to get out more.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

Intervention May be Required

This is what my beloved girl said to me last Friday:
"What made you think that kid's paper cutting scissors would do a better job on your hair than the kitchen shears did the last time you cut your own hair? Are you nuts?"

I don't know. As God is my witness, I don't know why I do these things.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

How Much is that Doggy in the Window?

I was going to post this story that at first blush was kind of funny, but really it is just sad. So yes, you'll get to hear about my Safeway encounter but I’m afraid you won’t be laughing at it. Or maybe you will, who knows?

So there I was at Safeway, at the book/magazine rack in the bakery section (which is the only logical place to put books). There is a guy next to me looking for whatever, and this is what we were BOTH subjected to by his Missus:

Are you done? Because I am.
Now are you done?
What are you looking for, I’ll find it because I’m tired of waiting (they had been there maybe ONE MINUTE)
Fine, I’m going to go.
Seriously I’m going to go.

Now at this point I am feeling pretty bad for the guy, but I’m not looking at him, or even at her. She leaves. For maybe fifteen seconds. And then she returns and she’s back at it:

Oh God, I left and you STILL DIDN’T COME. What is wrong with you? We’re leaving, and I mean now!!!!!! (At which point I realize that she has a child in the cart with her. A child that – if it is a girl – will grow up to be a high maintenance nightmare, or – if it is a guy – a spineless wimp).

Now, this last was said in the tone some parents use with their five year olds (and they shouldn’t). And here she was using it on a partner, presumably someone she loved, at one point. I made the mistake of looking at him, not realizing my face must have been full of sympathy for him, and shock at her bitchiness. Because just looking over at him earned me a “what are YOU looking at?” complaint from her. Lordy day it was tempting to say something along the lines of “I’m looking at the man that you are slowly wearing into the ground. Don’t complain when he looks for happiness outside the marriage” but I figured that would be hurtful to the guy who was clearly suffering enough, and I was actually too gob smacked to come up with anything clever. I’ve seen dogs at the pound that haven’t looked as desperately sad as this man.

Monday, May 21, 2007

Leprechauns in the House

Or maybe some really obscure (and uncalled for) appliance curse. No, I kiddeth not. Little did I know when I complained about the fridge, dishwasher and dryer all dying at the same time that the wee ones weren't finished with me yet.

My stove died on Saturday. Permanently? Who knows. I fixed it enough to bake some shrimp in garlic sauce that night, in the belief that seafood makes it all better. I even topped the meal off with a single piece of Lindt chocolate. Because what seafood doesn't fix, chocolate surely will.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007


Well. Who thought that there would be anything humourous in a collection about land, easements and water control. Not me. And yet here I am, with a file labelled "Druid Flood Control".

Monday, April 30, 2007

I'm too sexy

I thought I had done particularly well this morning for a Monday: walked the puppies, made lunches, woke up kids, sorted some laundry, put away some laundry, made breakfast, hung sheets out to dry. I even managed to wear a matching outfit to work today. Unfortuantely I completely forgot shoes. Oh I've got something on my feet, alright. Just not the shoesI set out for work. Slippers. Or to be more accurate, the sandals that I use for slippers. Hot pink rubbery sandals. Hurray for Monday!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Law of Attraction

I have created a law of attraction, and I'm calling it Zoë’s Law.

Zoë’s Law states that hot guys appear when you’re looking worse than a rabid raccoon that has been dragged through mud and pine needles, and anti-hot guys appear when you look the closest you’ll ever get to looking hot.

For example…personal example, that is:

Break a foot when you’re looking all swish and stuff and the doctor that comes to provide care and comfort will be a cranky grey-haired jerk with all the sympathy of a blob of spit. Go to the clinic when you’re in sweats, hair unwashed and bedraggled, Petechiae around the eyes from puking and migraine coloured skin (a delightful mix of pea green, waxy yellow and dead-for-a-week white) and the doctor will be a smokin’hot Mediterranean guy.

Have to get a child to school in four minutes or less (starting from a sound sleep) or they miss a field trip? Go swathed in a pink and gold cloud of nightwear – I had four minutes, no time to dress, ok? – and instead of dropping off said child and zooming home the trip leader will HAVE to come to the car and speak to you. And that leader will be a mustached, six foot tall woman with the shoulders of an ox. Guaranteed. On the other hand, take a kid to school when you’ve had the flu and you figure you can get them there and yourself home in time for the next round of puking and I can promise that the cop that finds you parked on the side of the road, out of your car, wearing flannels and puking on someone’s grass will be the only cute cop that exists in the entire city.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Thursday Classes

I swear, every Thursday I learn something new. Something big. Last week's Lesson?
Don't make your decision re: painkiller presription or no painkiller prescription while the anesthetic is still working. Wait until it wears off and then decide if you're hurting or not. Saying no to drugs while you're frozen is not always going to work out.

Can't wait to see what tonight has to teach me.

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Deciduous or Coniferous?

I walked off the elevator (which I was taking because I had a cart of boxes to take downstairs) as two of the smokers walked in. And the doors opened in time for me to hear the following:

"I'd rather have sex with a tree than see him again".

A tree? That is the first thing that pops into her head when she'd thinking of things she would prefer over whomever? Does she have tree-sex experience? Why not choose some really awful tv or movie person. Ann Coulter, maybe, or George Bush. Senior.

Maybe the guy she was talking about is deadwood, and at least a tree is living. I don't know, but it was too much for such an early morning.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

A New Step Every Day

So, Friday night dance class will indeed work better than Thursday nights but it sure plays havoc with sleeping when your Saturday starts at four-thirty.

The class was worth it though, even though the first half hour was the two step. Not something I really want to learn, but excellent exercise nevertheless. The second half hour was jive, so again a really good work out. The only down side to the class - well, apart from the mirrors. I can't decide if the mirrors are good, because they strengthen your resolve to get fit, or terrible because until you get fit they're as depressing as all get out. Maybe neither - I avoid mirrors at home, so it is easy to avoid them in class. Which is bloody brilliant given that one entire wall it mirrored.

Anyway, back to whatever point it was that I thought I was making. Ah yes, not a point but a remark. I get that it would be nice for couples to have a minute at the end of class to dance with their partners (during the class partners change all the time), but I wasn't expecting to hear "ok, for this last minute or two go back to your partners. Single guys raise your hands. Ok, LEFTOVER LADIES, partner up with someone whose hand is up".

Woohoo. I'm no longer a homely, pudgy, middle-aged white woman. No, I've moved up. I'm now a leftover lady. And yes, I am glad he didn't say "pudgy homely white women go partner up with the single guys". And he could of, believe me.


Anger as fuel. Deadly in the long run, without equal in the short.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

I suspect I'm not enough of a girlie girl.

Because there is no way on earth I could run from a murderer with these stupid shoes. I can only just manage to walk in them. Why, you may ask, am I wearing stupid shoes? (At least the guys are, the women probably not). Because I couldn't find my regular work shoes for wearing with clothes in the green/brown/beige spectrum. Black shoes, yes. For the blue/black part of the wardrobe. But not brown ones. And no boots to be found either. What I could find was one beige shoe that is sort of a dome shoe, and a pair of totally cool but totally dome shoes. So I put 'em on. And I don't even work in the building with the shoe fetishist guy*. So all I have is footwear that guarantees that I'd be the first person caught if there was like, a bear or something roaming the building. Bugger.

* Yes, he was. I felt a little bit sorry for him, actually. Until he blurted out that he likes looking and holding women's shoes. He didn't say anything about wearing them, but maybe he does that too. The whole confession was a little bit creepy, but it did explain why he never ever looked at anything but people's feet. Made for interesting elevator rides. He would have loved these shoes.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Killer Cutlery

I meant to post this last week, but things have been hectic.

Last Wednesday was my first day on reference at work. One of the things I had to find was for a woman who was looking for someone hung (aren't we all?) If you're executed for something - back when we did that - all the relevant paperwork is in Ottawa, but we do have a book that has at least the basic information: who did the killing, whom they killed - or robbed, that was a punishable by death crime too - what they killed with, where they were executed. that kind of all stuff. So flipping through the book looking for the name she was looking for, I come across someone who killed his wife and then tried to commit suicide. A suicide which I guess was a success, as he was hung for her murder. His method? A fork. He killed her with a fork. How angry do you think one has to be to successfully kill with a fork?

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Line 'em up, Baby!

Boy, do I know how to live it up. This Thursday? Working, baking, gaming, dancing and, oh yeah, part one of a root canal, thanks to the oft-mentioned not forgotten bone infection.

Easy Come, Easy Go

We have officially been told how they’re working out the pay stuff for the new contract. The first pay cheque in May will have the retroactive deductions for the CPP back to October 1st. But we won’t see the retroactive back pay itself until the second pay cheque in May. Why? I don’t know, they don’t say. Maybe because the signing bonus is on the first cheque, so we won’t mind the extra money going off then, and then the extra money in the second cheque will seem better? All I know is I have two dead and one dying appliances waiting on this to go down. (I love spell check. It was insisting that what I REALLY wanted to say there was “all I know am I have”.) And maybe paying for some plumbing, because I have almost given up on one project for sheer lack of muscle. Almost, but not quite. Never give in, never surrender!

Monday, April 02, 2007

It's a Brand New Year

Beginning of April and the work year starts anew: new sick leave, new vacation leave (which I accidentally wrote down on my work schedule as vocation leave), new pay. Whenever that happens to appear, that is. I had thought the second pay cheque in April but methinks that was a bit of wishful thinking. First pay in May? We'll see. Although if the fridge dies altogether I won't be able to wait for the back pay, I'll have to go to plan B which involves banks and Mayb driving a getaway car.

This was also going to be the first morning that kids came for a morning walk with me. M. did, and I was quite pleased with her. She hasn't been happy over the new get fit regime food wise, but the exercise part seems to be working. Still, I didn't expect her to get up in time this morning, but she did. Dogs and mom were thrilled. And A, you ask? I did turn his light on and ask if he was planning on coming for a walk. He said "urgh". I translated that to "thought I would last night but I really hate getting up in the morning go away and leave me in peace". So we went without him. But we went!

Friday, March 30, 2007

Action in the Early Morning

This could mean a couple of things, couldn't it? I leave it you to decide which it is:

Inexplicably, given I'm not seeing anyone, I somehow managed an early morning booty call.

Again, inexplicably, the thermos that my tea was in exploded, covering my hands, face, neck, chest and shirt with minute shards of silvery glass. Not to mention the floor, the counter and the coffee machine, all of which were nice and sparkly until I cleaned up.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

L'aventure de toilette

There was a guy in the ladies room on the main floor today so I went to the second floor ladies. I was apparently the first of several women wanting to use the facilities, because once I was in the stall the outside door opened and two women walked in talking. One of them then said “Full! But I have to go so I suppose I’ll wait”.

Suppose? Is there a possibility that she’ll go where she stands, so to speak?

Just as I’m thinking that perhaps the second floor populated with diaper-wearing fetishishts, whoever is in the first stall says:

“Well who is in that one? I don’t recognize the shoes”. (This would make complete sense if I had been wearing the tri-colour shoes with the juggling frog on the toes, but I wasn’t) . What? Who remembers the footwear of EVERY WOMAN THEY WORK WITH? Crazy people, that’s who. Next time I’ll wait for the guy to leave out bathroom.

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

The dog was created especially for children. He is the god of frolic.

When the kids aren’t home the dogs usually sleep in my room. Usually. Sometimes, especially if the kids are gone for more than a few days, they tend to glare at me and sleep in the kid’s rooms. As if I needed to be reminded that my babies weren’t there! And if you think that dogs don’t glare you’re dangerously mistaken. It would be safer to know the difference between the big dog being happy to see you and asking to play, and being upset with you and wondering how much damage she can inflict before – if – you get away. I digress.

Lexi left my room at 10:30-ish. No big deal, she was probably going to sleep in M.’s room. I went to sleep. What with it being close to eleven and all. Did she return? Oh yes, belovèd, she did indeed.

I was having an absolutely scrumptious dream involving underground tunnels, swords and a talking bear when a very large, filthy and soaking wet something landed on me and the bed. For a second or two I thought something had happened in the battle for the tunnel and the bear was dead, but no, I was awake and there was Lexi: filthy muddy, soaking wet, exhausted and lying stretched out on my bed. Looking extremely pleased with herself, too, I might add. I got up and turned on the light and followed the destruction out of the room, down the hall and into the dining room. Where the back door was open. Wide open. Free entry into the fenceless yard. Lord knows how long she’d been gone (it was 3:30 in the morning) but she certainly checked out the house for intruders when she got back. I could tell from the muddy paw prints everywhere. Yes, everywhere. Ok, not quite everywhere but the places she missed (television screen, coats in the front hall, etc) were clearly the places she took a break from the destruction to shake off all the mud and rain on her coat. So the effect was the same as muddy paws everywhere. I swear I’m going to train her in moping floors tonight. Or maybe I’ll just use her as a mop.

For those of you - which may be just one - interested the quote in the title is Henry Beecher.

Monday, March 26, 2007

Truth in Repetition

After raving enthusiasm from my sister (yes, she was actually raving) about Saganaki*, I decided I would make it myself at home, to see if I liked it. I was hoping, a little bit, that I wouldn’t: it sounds delicious, something you might have as a last meal. Last, because it’s artery-clogging cheesiness is probably deadly.

So – most recipes suggest Kasseri as the cheese de choix. If that is unavailable, alternates would be Kashkaval, Manouri, Kefalograveria and Kefalotiri. See what Cheese-a-day will do for you? So on Friday I went to buy some Kasseri, at the Italian Star Deli on Victoria Avenue. Need I plug the great Ciabatta they have on the weekend? Didn’t think so. Anyway…Carlo recommended Kefalotiri, so we went with that. Made the dish, flaming alcohol and all – A. was thrilled, and we got it on film, just in case. Just in case we burned the house down which seemed like a reasonable possibility at the time.

It was pretty good, but A. didn’t like the lemon. And the cheese wasn’t as stringy as I had imagined.

Yesterday, M. and I went on a crazy trip to the east end. We hardly ever go there, so we stopped at a number of places that we see once in a blue moon: Michaels, Bath Goddess, Paderno, Bal Orient, etc. Since we were there we also went to the cheese shop, once again for cheese to try Saganaki again. M. had missed the whole kitchen-in-flames excitement, so I said we could do it again. Which we did. Film at eleven.

So in the store they had Kefalotiri, Kasseri and some packages labeled as “Saganaki”. I wondered what kind of cheese it was, so I went to the counter and said:

“I was looking for cheese for Saganaki, which is the name of a recipe, not a cheese. So what sort of cheese is this?”

“Generic cheese”.

“But…what kind? Is it goat’s milk, or sheep’s milk?”

“It’s cheese. Cheese cheese.”

Ah yes, that makes it all clear, doesn’t it? Cheese cheese. Silly me.

*saganaki[sah-gah-NAH-kee]A popular Greek appetizer in which 1/2-inch-thick slices of KASSERI CHEESE are fried in butter or olive oil. Saganaki is sprinkled with lemon juice (and sometimes fresh oregano) and served with PITA BREAD. Some Greek restaurants have a dramatic form of presentation: the cheese is first soaked in alcohol (such as BRANDY), then flambéed before being doused with lemon juice. Saganaki is generally served as an appetizer or first course.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Dancing with the stars. Au Naturel.

Spring equinox is tonight, 8:07 EDT. Try to find a moment for dancing in the buff.

You Can't Keep a Good Man Down.

Actually, yes you can. And good fun it is, too. :)
However, what I want to say is that I am inexplicably happy, almost all the time. I am happy even as I write this. Too happy, apparently, because a co-worker walking through my office took one look at me and said "what have you got to be so happy about?"

A billion things, actually. My question is, though, why do the cranky resent the happy? I'm cheerful. Get over it.

Monday, March 19, 2007

Someday was Friday

You know how you do things and you think to yourself "someday that is going to come back and bite me in the ass?" Well, someday was last Friday.

I have the unfortunate (but, I must say, usually spot on) habit of having nicknames for people. Mostly these names stay in my head. Not that they're mean, although it would hurt ickythickears feelings if he heard me call him that. And whilst I don't care about ITE himself, I am also not intentionally unkind to people. Even him. Mostly they're nice names, and some people know their names. Does Ky know I think of her as Superman's girlfriend? Probably not, but it is a compliment so that's ok.

I usually have nicknames to help me remember people's actual names. Sometimes that doesn't help: Ivan and Combover have the same first name, so while I remember what to call them I can't put their last names on a score sheet because I don't remember which is which. Some names stay VERY PRIVATE. His Holy Hotness, for instance, has never been identified. Fortunately he hardly ever appears so I don't often have a chance to mess up. And I do know his real name now too, so it's all good.

At work there is a woman - whom I've never met - that works in the same building but not in the same department. Not a clue who she is, but she smokes a number of cigarettes every day, and she always walks out the front door, over to the side of the building and smokes under the lovely tree outside my window. One of my windows, actually; my office is mainly glass. Anyway, she is crazy - I've seen her out there in -28 weather wearing an Indian cotton blourse and skirt, no coat - but to me she is simply Smoking lady.

On Friday I openend the door to the lobby just as she was coming in which startled her enough to make her gasp. To which I said "sorry smoking lady".

Well. There is nothing one can do at that point but nod and move on. No explanation is going to make that better. If I had to screw up on the whole nick name thing, though (and Lord knows I had to, it was a statistical inevitability) I'm glad it was Smoking Lady and not His Holy Hotness. Who would be perfect for Mayb, 'ceptin for the fact he's married. Dang.

Walking Excitement

Hmmm. That sounds like an ad for either a porn flick or an action movie. (Shouldn't they both be considered action movies?), but it isn't. It is about walking the dog.

I admit my dog needs to go to obedience school, and perhaps this summer she will. In the meantime, our walks tend to have moments of great excitement: other dogs, children with footballs, shrubs. The usual dog stuff. Yesterday, however, we upped the excitement level in a messy episode that brought me to my knees. And dragged me for a bit, too, as it happens. Today is garbage day>last night a lot of bins were already on the curb>some people overfill their bins>it was a very windy night> bins got knocked over>we came across a container on its side, garbage everywhere. And in that garbage, to the howling delight of the dog was a dirty diaper. Lexi?
Joy! Happiness - look, poopy mess, right here in the open. I'm going to grab it and I'll have so much fun and if you think THAT'S going to stop me you're so wrong because I'll just DRAG you to it and we'll both have fun and oh this is the best day of my life ever!

Me? I think if we'd found a sack of money I would have been almost as happy as she was over poop. Almost.

Friday, March 16, 2007


I take the stairs at work unless I am reading a particularly intersting book. I can read in the elevator, not on the stairs. Obviously.

So today, coming back from coffee I took the elevator. Only to discover, on the floor (in time to NOT step in it) a huge mucous-y blob of spit. With a goopy wad of gum beside it.

WHAT IS WRONG WITH PEOPLE???? Every single floor has a pair of bathrooms. And there is even the great outdoors is you feel absolutely compelled to spit in public. Ick ick ick.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

The Other Hand

Shall we move to hand B? Right, here we go:
Sometimes you’re thinking of doing something risky. Or mayhap just something outside of your usual comfort zone. And you climb out of that box you’re in and do it. And then sixty years down the road there you are, old, friendless, petless, unhappy and living in an old box in a dark alley wondering what on earth possessed you. Why did you quit that job, rob that bank, ask that person out, buy that fur sink? The beginning of the logically inevitable downward spiral of despair that led you to this sad state of affairs started with that one stupid moment in time. You should have known that you weren’t meant to have a fur sink.

Monday, March 12, 2007

The Two Hands of Risk Taking

There are two bits of advice to think about when you’re contemplating taking a risk. Both equally valid, but diametrically opposed in execution. Because I want you to have lots of time to think about this, I’m going to review hand A today, and hand B tomorrow.

Hand A: So there’s something you want to do. Perhaps it is a bit risky or mayhap just bold. And you decide in the end to just pass up on whatever you’re thinking about. So there you are, fifty years on wondering why you never went camping in Pacific Rim National Park, bought that motorcycle or went skinny dipping at that Mexican resort. What a waste. And here you are ninety years old and you’ll never do any of them. What were you thinking? Should have done it when you had the chance.

Friday, March 09, 2007

It doesn't grow on trees.

There must be something other than bank robbing as a road to moolah. I'll buy a lottery ticket on the way home, but really -all that does is give me a half hour or so of daydreaming about what I'd do if I win. Do you think if I asked nicely someone like Bill Gates would just hand some money over? Because all the ways I can think of that would get me money now are illegal.

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

And now for your viewing pleasure a quick song and dance.

It seems totally unfair to me that when, at long last, I have a dream that turns into a full fledged movie style musical the main person isn’t me. It was, in fact, May-b. Not that it wasn’t fun – by the end of it the five of us (Ky, Lyn, Bron, Mel and myself) were twirling on chairs and dancing on desks. But it was Bron’s office, and her song. I’m pretty sure Bron and Mel having been in Vegas influenced the dream. But still - surely in my own dream life I should be the star, yes?

Monday, March 05, 2007

One woman, one house, five dogs and a very bad cold.

I have friends – yes, really – and they often come to the rescue in my perhaps somewhat overwrought life. And occasionally we come to their rescue. Not usually a rescue, though; more a polite request for assistance than a panicked cry for help. Regardless, we are quite happy to help.

The help is usually in the same form – watching puppies. They have one and if their dad is out of town then the have their one and his two. They’re small dogs, though, so three isn’t such a big deal. And since my boy is to be trusted, I had no problem saying that yes, he could spend Saturday night at their house while they tripped the light fantastic in Rosetown.

Well. Nothing, of course, ever goes to plan. And something came up for the kids that was sufficiently huge that I agreed they could spend the night at their dad’s house. Yes, I know we had agreed to puppy sit, but it was a very big deal. So: I, obviously, could go over and puppy sit. But…I have two dogs of my own. One a sweet but goofy looking dachshund/spaniel cross, the other a solid 110 pounds of bounding black lab muscle and goodwill. I couldn’t leave them alone just so someone else’s dogs aren’t alone – how is that fair?

I thought about bringing their three to my house, but I am fenceless in the back yard. Not to mention that the three dogs would then have new mom, new dogs and new surroundings. So in the end I did what any crazy person would do: I took my two over to their house.

The first minutes were pandemonium, but sufficiently short lived that I’m hoping there will be no noise complaints from neighbours. The crux of the madness was their three barking their little heads off, and my two running around in apparent accident prone ecstasy. I got my two into the back yard, settled their three, brought mine in, took theirs out and then got all of us settled indoors. And read the note that had been left about walks and food and similar things.

The walk notes went out the window. I took the dogs one at a time – mainly because my big one needs all the muscle I can muster to keep from being dragged down the street on my back like some bad western movie stunt, and because one of their dogs will walk home from the park with me but not to the park with me. So I carry her there and walk her back, much to the amusement of the neighbours.

I did get them all walked – and let me tell you, I’m counting the whole ridiculous circus of walking as a full work out – and we settled down for some TV. Except I couldn’t get anything but one tiny corner of the screen to work. So no television. I brought books, though – of course! – so I read one and then let them all outside again. The whole reading time they got along inasmuch as they weren’t growling at each other or barking like mad all over the place. I kept Lexi (she’s the big one) on a long leash. Now, this leash let her get all around the living room, but as long as she was on it the other dogs were fine. When I took her off it – which meant she had the SAME RANGE she did when it was on, the insane barking started all over again.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Nothing new under the sun

Whenever I do something that people think is totally crazy (no, do't bother telling me what I've done that you think makes me crazy), I like to remember that there is nothing new under the sun. Someone somewhere has done it, no matter what "it" is.

So the deli I bake for is closed for renovations. So for the first Saturday in like, ever, I don't have to get up at four-thrity in the morning. BUT...I am going to set my alarm for that, so when it goes off I can slam it off and say "not this time, baby, not this time". Which is crazy, but if I just sleep in, there is no sense of joy, of having won the alarm clock battle.

Who am I?

I have an ipod thingy. A shuffle, actually. The music on it ranges thusly:
Doris Day - Leon Redbone - Kate & Anna McGarrigle - Styx - Aerosmith - Hawksley Workman - Daft Punk - Fall Out Boy - Ram Jam - Delbert McClinton - John Hiatt. I can honestly and truly say my musical selection is eclectic. Or mentally unstable. Whichever.

I'm WHAT??

How can one take a test and after getting one single little question wrong be told that theresult was "adequate"? Is that how life works, you're either perfect or you're adequate? Totally sucks.

Thursday, March 01, 2007

Pre-9 cloud o disaster

Before the clock had even managed to strike nine I had:
Fallen in mud/slush/snow
Gone home and changed
Taken my girl home from school which hadn't even started
Fallen again, not so much mud and no change needed
Arrived at work to discover that my pants were actually a bit more muddy than I thought
Skidded onto a median to avoid hitting an idiot in an SUV who seemed to feel that an SUV and testosterone are enough to keep your vehicle from slidding across the road
Brought shoes from yesterday in a Safeway bag to the office, leaving the Safeway bag with my lunch at the house

Now, there was on small silver lining to all of this. The SUV guy hit a lamp post. Ha!

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

What a Girl Wants

Other than that, of course. Duh.

“In Cavaillon, there are seventeen bakers listed in the Pages Jaunes, but we had been told that one establishment was ahead of all the rest in terms of choice and excellence, a veritable Palais de pain. At Chez Auzet, so they said, the baking and eating of breads and pastries had been elevated to the status of a minor religion”. Peter Mayle

Where am I aiming for with the business? I want to bring a place like that to Regina. Or perhaps Victoria. The latter may be easier than the former but I won’t say no to a challenge!

So what drives me, what would I like to see in a Boulangerie~Pâtisserie? I think Peter Mayle covers it quite well describing that shop in Cavaillon:

“There are chairs and marble topped tables along one wall where you can have coffee and a croissant still glowing from the warm breath of the oven. Posters by local artists, photographs, and mementos share wall space with shelves line with bottles of champagnes, pots of homemade jams and syrups, baskets of almond biscuits, flasks of truffle scented olive oil.
And then there’s the bread – a panorama of bread, stretching for perhaps twenty feet behind the counter, bread arranged according to type and size, varying in color from pale gold to a deep chocolate brown, a display as tanned and tightly packed as tows of sunbathers on a Riviera beach”.

I have enjoyed everythingthat Peter Mayle has written, and for a quick little trip in the joys of bread and baking give a read to Confessions of a French Baker.

Yeah, there are other things in life that I want but we’re just talking business here, ‘k?

Monday, February 26, 2007

All I can say is that the pain was responsible.

Now that I’m feeling better (better as in than I was, not as in everything is totally fine now) I’m ok with talking about the hospital visit. Not that it was stranger than usual, simply that emergency rooms tend to have more happening in them than say the local dépanneur.

Having taken Mayb away from vacuuming –which I think is a pointless useless task anyway. And things always end up in smoke anyway – to take me to the Pasqua H., I figured that my troubles were over. Forgive my naiveté, but it’s been a while since I’ve been to a hospital and I’d forgotten the minimum two day wait period.

The first thing you do is check in. Wait, no the first thing you do is wash your hands with that gel stuff. Then you check in. So I was, sit in the chair and hand the nurse my health card. She takes it and does computer stuff. Then she SNAPS on the counter in front of me and says “this says Sterling, we have you as Gordon. What’s going on here?”

Now, I’m pretty sure name changes happen all the time. You get divorced, or married, you’re in witness protection, you’re running from the monstrous evil that was your previous life. So I was a bit puzzled by this statement. I was also, unfortunately, in a great deal of pain. So I said “I’m running from a South African hit squad trying to get their conflict diamonds back from me. But Sterling really is my name, they’re looking for Gordon, the fools”. Not perhaps the best idea. May even have added to the time I had to wait. It’s just…I was in a great deal of pain. Don’t mess with someone in pain who should have been enjoying the first Provincial Family Day ever. Gave her the real reason for the different name. She gave me a wrist band, and told me to put the wheel chair away (I fainted when I came in, before the hand washing. Nice nurse helped me to a chair).

Ah, welcome to hospital life!

Friday, February 23, 2007


First of all, codeine is not what it is cracked up to be. Makes me sick, woozy merely dulls the pain. Doesn't actually get rid of the pain, doesn't give me neat hallucinations - doesn't give me any, for that matter - and doesn't let me sleep well.

Jello and pudding are beginning to pale. I will be happy when this is all over. And I'll have steak for supper, followed by a really crisp apple for dessert. Because that day will come, sooner or later.

Thursday, February 22, 2007

Three Times NOT a Lady

Do something once and it's an accident.
Twice and, well, that's a bit careless, yes?
Three times I"ll bet there is something sinister going on.

There I was, sitting in the hospital waiting room when a guy in a wheel chair arrives- Hockey accident, how very Canadian!- pushed by his wife. Moving him into the room she accidentally runs him into a wall. Screams of pain and an apology of "oops, I was going a bit fast there, wasn't I?". She turns the corner into the waiting room, and accidentally runs him into a chair. Another apology, and the rest of us are now watching. Sure enough, when it is his turn to go she manages to YET AGAIN bang his foot into a wall.

First time - accident. Second time, well, maybe still an accident but you'd think she would have learned by the agonized reaction of the first incident. Third time? Methinks the woman has an issue with her husband, hockey or both.

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

The lottery is next. Statistical certainty.

Well maybe not the lottery, but something weird but nice, yes? I mean I can live with the cloud of weirdness that follows me around, I can cope with my son saying "you fainting in the kitchen wasn't a huge shock. Except for the sound you made hitting the floor", I understand my girl saying it is hard to decide what mom story is the funniest but all in all, statistically speaking something weird has to happen that is GOOD. Not something like phoning May-B for a ride to the hospital on family day (which makes her even more family that she already is). Not spending the whole afternoon there, and certainly not being on antibiotics for an infection that has gone from jaw to cheekbone (I never really gave it much thought but apparently bones can get infected). Also not getting a bill for almost four grand for work done on the street where I live. None of those things. Something cool. Magical. Wonderful. A lottery win would sufficient, as long as it was spectacular enough to match the spectacular weirdness that I live with.

I have stories from the ER to tell, but not until I can type with both hands. One hand has to hold the side of my face, the other has to type and all this has to go down while I rock back and forth on the computer chair. I now the answer to one mystifying question, though: what would I rather do over, delivering a baby or Monday/Tuesday thinking that surely death would be easier than whatever was going on. The former. I'd sooner be in labour than have this pain go on. The dentist said that two days on the glow-in-the-dark antibiotics for bones will ease the pain. It's been just over 24 hours.

On the plus side, I bet that my dentist has never had anyone react to his suggestion of needles and freeaing with "Oh God, please, yes please nownownownow". Sure made the guy in the next room look in to see what was going on! But that three hour block of freezing is the only bit of pain free time I've had since late Saturday. And what is today? Tuesday? Maybe Wednesday. Yeah, Wednesday because Monday was hospital, Tuesday was dentist.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Ah Valentines Day

Ok, so I didn't have clothes-tearing house-rocking nookie, but it wasn't so bad: a hot bath with the water to my neck, a small glass of vintage port, aged cheddar with home made crackers, a really good read and Rickie Lee Jones with Dr. John (and others) playing in the background. Yeah, life is sweet.


And here you all thought I'd get nothing for Valentines! I got two things, as it happens: a singing card from the Caribbean and a BLOODY COLD FIRE ALARM.

Yep, you read that right: the most exciting thing to happen to day was a fire alarm, trucks and all. On a day that was -30 C. and that isn't even counting the windchill factor. The cold, in fact, is what caused the alarm. There are sensors on the roof and the best guess the experts can make is that the extreme cold from the added windchill factor make the alarms go. Totally NOT the day to be standing around. In the end we went into the mainly empty mall next door - you can get frostbite at temperatures like this. So now I have something to say when people ask me what I did for Valentines: froze my fingers to blueness, followed by an extremely painful re-animating back at the office.

Down Filled Deception.

You may not know this, but my comforter talks to me, the lying cheating thing. This morning it convinced me to stay in bed for ten extra minutes. So I did, and it was pointless. I don’t feel any more rested, I never did get back to the dream long enough to find out who I was whispering sweet nothings to and the house wasn’t any warmer when I did get up. All that happened was that I had to rush through getting ready, barely got to work on time and almost forgot to bring bread to work for taste testing. That down filled sweet talking thing is trouble. It even called me at work once, trying to convince me that it would be a good idea to go home and go back to bed.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


My son is attending his first funeral today. The only other funeral either of my kids may have gone to took place when the kids were out of province. This one is for the mother of friends of his (twin boys), and he was asked to go. Wish I had time banked or something so I could go with him. The mom was really young, too. Poor family, this is a grievous year for them.

Monday, February 12, 2007

No, I don't want to see your ass.

'Member how I'm taking up knitting to fill in those few nano-seconds of spare time I have? Having knit two scarves I've decided to move on to something else. So I found a beginners pattern for a throw, or small blanket. I'm going to make it for M., because she likes to cuddle on the couch when we're movie watching. She usually grabs her bedroom blanket...and leaves it there. So I'm going to make something specifically for the couch cuddling.

Once I found a pattern I decided that rather than go to Walmart and buy some weird synthetic yarn I'd go to a specialty shop and get something interesting. So I beetled off during my coffee break to a store fairly close to the office. Ended up with circular needles and four skiens of cotton yarn in a neat mixed denim colour.

I decided to stop in at a nearby drug store to get a tin of tuna or something for lunch as all I'd remembered to do this morning was grab a loaf of bread from the freezer. I go in, find some tuna and go to the counter. I am in danger of being late at this point, but it should be quick because there was only one person ahead of me. I'm standing there waiting when I realize that he isn't buying anything. He is talking to the cashier about his ass (his words, not mine). Telling her what a great ass he has, what with all the walking and biking he does. Asks her if she can tell he has a great ass. Then he turns do me and says "do you want to see my ass? 'Cause it's a really great ass. I work hard at it" (at this point I was counting how many times he said the word "ass"). I turned down his ass-viewing offer, stating clearly that I just wanted to buy some tuna and get back to work. One of the few times I've been anxious to get back to the job! He kindly let me ahead of him. And he was still talking about his behind when I left him behind. Poor cashier. Wonder if he's a regular.

Oh, and did I mention? He was retired, and in his mid-seventies. Yeah, that's the kind of ass I want to see.

Life Lesson

You should always carry a change of clothes in the trunk of your car. Just in case you go somewhere and have to give your shirt away. Especially in the winter, when being naked under a light jacket is no picnic. There. Don't say I never impart useful information.

P.S. by the way, either my luck has improved or chanting "please don't let me get pulled over by the cops" works.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Blonde vs. Brunette

I was driving along with a friend, a female friend (doesn’t that sound like the next line should be “re, a drop of golden sun”?) this morning when the conversation took an unusual turn:

Me: Wow. Nice sky.
Her: where?
Me: Where?
Her: Where is he?
Me: Where is who?
Her: The guy. You said there was a guy.
Me: No, I didn’t I sai
Her (interrupting): yes, you did.
Me: what I said was Nice Sky
Her: That’s what I said you said. So where is he?
Her: Now you’re just being rude.
Me: And you’re just being blonde.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

I would have thought everyone knew this.

I just want to say one thing: If you're going to work on a door that opens inward - i.e. TOWARDS you - you should put a sign on the door so no one opens it when you're up on the ladder. Because if you don't you could get hurt and it WOULDN'T be the fault of the door opener. I guess that is two things. But still, people need to do this.

Friday, February 02, 2007

When to NOT Google

I went and saw a doctor about the cold from hell I was going through and he wanted me to see my regular doctor for a different concern 9the cold was bronchitus and I did get antibiotics from that). No big deal, I made and appointment and I'm seeing my family doctor this afternoon. Which was fine until I googled "thyroid" just to see what the first doctor was worried about. Which was a giant mistake because in the space of two minutes I've gone from wondering what route is the shortest to Normanview Mall to planning my own funeral. Sometimes it's best not to read stuff in advance.

Peanut Allergy Rant

First of all, don't bother telling me that the whole thing started because of a mistake I made; I'm aware of that, but I'm still upset over the outcome.

So - I have two kids. One in elementary school where no nuts are allowed and one in high school where there's a nut free for all. I was driving my youngest to school and when she asked me to grab her lunch I took the wrong one. I grabbed the one with a peanut butter and jam triple layer sandwich in it, which was intended for her brother. So what happened when she discovered this at lunch? Asked to eat separately, and to wash well after? No. Sent to the principals office to eat? Nope. Sent outside? Nope. Asked to call home? No, as a matter of fact they wouldn't let her call me. Or even friends that live near the school that might have been home. And they wouldn't let her eat her lunch, either. How much time on the office phone would that be, a minute? "mom I have nuts in my lunch come and get me so I can eat at home". Not even a minute, but apparently that was too much to ask. So she went foodless.

I will, of course, be checking with the school to make sure this is what happened. I can see the lunch room monitor - who is an elderly volunteer - saying no to phoning, but I can't see the secretary saying no. So I'll check before I go kick butt.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Raiment Rotation

I have a skirt that doesn’t fit anymore. A couple of skirts, actually. Because I’m smaller, not bigger. Yeah!

Anyway, the skirt I wore today has a definite front and a definite back. Everytime I wear this skirt the same thing happens: it slowly works its way around until the front is at the back and the back is at the front. And there it stays for the remainder of the day. And I find myself wondering why it doesn’t keep rotating until it is correct again. Why is it not constantly moving around in slow circles? And that makes me wonder why I have enough time to wonder about mysterious clothing migration.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Pointlessly excited.

Honestly, not everything has to be about sex, you know! I’m talking tea here. I read in a local webzine that we had a tea shop. Now, for one who orders tea online alternating with bringing it back with me when I go to BC the thought of a local tea shop really was exciting. Or perhaps pleasing would be a better term. I was going to call Ky on Sunday and suggest we could for a anicecupofteaandasitdown, and peruse what was available in fine loose leaf teas. Girl bonding and stuff, because I finally know another tea drinker.

I decided in the end to go on my own, and to go as me. Wear whatever I felt like wearing and to hell with those who call me hippy-dippy. Forget the overweight bit and enjoy having curves. I’d have some really nice tea, maybe even a scone. I’d buy something new to try at home – Kenyan Single Estate, perhaps? – And in the joy of tea fellowship some to drop off at the three sisters. (More Austen’s three than Shakespeare’s, in case your’re wondering). Sigh. Things aren’t meant to go as planned, ever.

It was a coffee shop. With tea. Three kinds of black tea: Lemon, Earl Grey and English Breakfast. I can get more at Safeway! They had some Rooibos and some herbals but that was it. Sort of a coffee shop nod to tea drinkers. So when I open a café it will have tea. Good tea, really good tea, and lots to choose from because it will be my shop and I’ll be the boss of me.


Wednesday, January 24, 2007


Wish I could remember what it was like to have the ability to breathe easily. To have lungs that weren't all wheezy like a sickly sponge. On the plus side, this fever is giving me some mighty interesting dreams.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Spot On!

Remember how P.H. has the kids for a week? Last Sunday until this coming Sunday? Well those of us in the know have been wondering if it would actually be a week. My bet was that if it wasn't they would be back on Thursday. Because that is my one night out of the week, so if my life were to be messed that would be the best choice.

So I'm right. Of course. Phone call today asking if they can come back. I agreed...but said that if he was leaving for somewhere tomorrow morning then he could take the kids to school and I would pick them up after school. So that is what is happening. They're back early, which is fine with me, but I can still stay out late tonight and sleep in tomorrow. If I want to do so, that is.

Married Men

I was going to post about going out for supper last night, but May-B has already done so

So all I'm going to say is that I need to go out with some homely women, just for a change. So I'm not the homely short one of the group. Fer once. At least Ky wasn't with us. The three of them and me would have had me singing "one of these things is not like the other" in my head all supper long.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


On one leg I think it quite commendable that since I had music again I went for a walk last night despite the snow and wind. On the other leg I think it would have been better to change out of the skirt I wore to work and into something like jeans, or sweats. Something that didn't leave bare skin for the wind and cold to turn blue. Some day I'll do something and it will be completely perfect and absolutely normal.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Fantasy & Reality, Part ?

I was rolling out pastry for a turkey pie on the weekend, and looking at my new 2007 calendar. Hmm. That's probably redundant. I'd hardly have a new 1998 calendar up, would I? Anyway, it is a calendar of dragons (yes, I know, I'm a geek. Shut up), and as I am looking at the January picture "dragon scholar" I caught myself thinking "that doesn't look right. I don't think that the wing tips have claws like that". I'm trying to figure this error out, the brain I should listen to more often says "hey, geekgirl, it's a DRAGON. They don't actually exist. It can't be wrong, because there is nothing real to compare it to. It could have three heads, one wing and pink polka dot scales and it would still be right because it is a fantasy. Come back when you've sorted out what is real and what isn't".

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Not my boyfriend

So May-b went to see Casino Royale without me. Except wait a minute, she's not my boyfriend so that shouldn't matter.

Over the Christmas break my son went to see Casino Royale. Also without me. And again I had to remind myself, that's ok because he is not my boyfriend either. So I am taking a book to a movie. Why? Because there is the time that you're waiting for the film to start, and a book is a good companion.