Monday, July 31, 2006

Time for a new post

The only problem is, I'm not sure what to write about.

You see, I've been spending the last couple of hours trying to work out exactly what admissions people at the graduate school of my choice want to see in that little essay you're supposed to write that describes exactly why you're the perfect candidate for their school and also makes them want to throw money in your general direction and also I should avoid run-on sentences.

So, as I'm sure you can guess, my brain (if removed from my skull and examined under a bright fluorescent light) currently resembles a kind of sticky paste made from approximately two cups of raisins that have gone through the blender at high speed, to which has been added three heaping tablespoons of honey. And also a quarter cup of milk. (Well, maybe not the milk.)

Man. It's a good thing my brain is fastened securely to the inside of my skull, otherwise the ants would be all over me! (ACK! ANTS!)

Where was I?

Oh, yes. A topic. Which I do not have.

Ummmm....Well, as it turns out, my day off has been cut short, (they're apparently very busy at my place of employment today), so I don't really have much more time to write stuff, seeing as how I've got to leave in, like 30 minutes. It's really pretty disappointing. I was going to write my essay & polish it & then proceed to bug the appropriate people to please, PLEASE write me letters of recommendation, but alas, I've only had time for a rough essay outline, which goes as follows:

Point one: Talk about how you were born with a book in your hand. It's not really true, but it'll get everybody at the admissions committee to have a good laugh, and hey--you can always use that.

Point two: Talk about recommending "Everybody Poops" to all of the children who came into the library. Seriously. Like, how you would run after them waving it frantically, screaming "You've GOT to read this book! It will CHANGE YOUR LIFE!!!" Yeah. That'll impress 'em.

Point three: Talk about how the school is PERFECT for you. It's far away from home, so your parents won't be able to keep bugging you about taking that pesky medication.

Point four: Talk about how you're PERFECT for the program. After all, you own a couple of books yourself, and you've even read some of 'em, so you should get along pretty darn well with all them booky people they have at that thar school of theirn. (And also write it in a weird western accent. That's SURE to get their attention.)

And that's about as far as I've gotten. The fine details of the essay may require some tweaking, but I think I've essentially got it. Yep. So, grad school--HERE I COME!

Thursday, July 27, 2006

High Foreheads and Recording Contracts

Did you know that Norah Jones has a high forehead?

She does.

I wasn't really aware of this myself until I bought her CD Come Away With Me, (do you italicize names of CD albums???), which features several pics of said artist in which it becometh clear that her forehead beeth high.

Which got me thinking.

I too have been blessed with a high forehead (compliments of my dad, who has a forehead extending nearly to his neck--which I think is adorable, by the way). So, why can't I make a fabulous debut album and set up recording contracts with major record labels? You know? 'Cause really, I can't even imagine a better correlation than the one between high foreheads and recording contracts.

So. I will learn to croon, and play the piano properly while I croon, and I will make my sultry voice resonate in the midst of smoke-filled rooms. And then some punk kid with a tape recorder and a dream will hear me, and off we'll go to strike it big. And me with my high forehead, and the kid with his savvy technical know-how, we're gonna go all the way.

I can feel it.

Monday, July 24, 2006


Well, against my own better judgement, I am including in this post a pic of mein self. I did a wee little photo shoot using my wee little digital camera this afternoon. (Hoorah for Utah State Holidays! No work!)

Sooooo....yep. There's me. Actually, it's kind of weird sitting here typing a post whilst staring at mein self. It's actually kind of creepy, if you want to know the truth--kinda like--DUDE! Stop staring already!

Okay. So, now that you all know what I kind of look like right now, (I SWEAR--the only thing I Photoshopped (hehe--"Shoppe at your local Photoshoppe") was the brightness/contrast thingy), I guess I can go.



Friday, July 21, 2006

Poor men. They haven't got a chance.

On behalf of those of us (aka women) who are fond of Jane Austen and her film incarnations, I must break it to the rest of the world that, I'm sorry, you'll just never quite measure up.

You see, the Jane Austen men (at least the leading men) will always be universally charming, romantic, and impeccably dressed. And, while the rest of you (aka living & breathing men) certainly have powers of charm & romance, these powers seem to dissipate all too quickly. You sometimes blow your noses too loudly, or leave a bit of a mess around the toilet. In the world of romance, some of you may pursue too hard, and others (shockingly) never fall in love with the right person at all (i.e. the woman who wants you). In short, you're real--you have problems and issues just like us, and we can't have that, now can we?

Jane Austen men always properly dispose of their hankies. And, at the end, they always seem to screw up enough courage to tell the woman of their dreams that they are lost unless she saves them. How can you blame us then when about every five seconds there's a woman who sighs as the ending credits of Pride & Prejudice start scrolling down the screen, or as she sets down Persuasion after the long-awaited reunion of Anne and Captain Wentworth, or as she realizes while reading Sense and Sensibility just how much Colonel Brandon cares for Marianne, and that really he can make her much more happy than Willoughby ever could.

Alas, you real-life red-blooded men. Try as hard as you may, you can never quite measure up to those little expectations we generate for you. You can never truly be Mr. Darcy. It really isn't your fault, though. And eventually, we women will put down the book, or turn off the television, and come back to our senses...but perhaps never quite all the way. Be patient with us, will you? There's a dear.

Thursday, July 20, 2006

So, what shall it be?

Oh, you guys. I'm so sorry I haven't posted in so long. I've been...not quite in the mood to post.

You see, posting takes a firm (maybe) grasp of something interesting to explore, a great deal of energy, and a tiny amount of oregano. (Although basil may be substituted in extreme circumstances.)

While my oregano supply is still running fairly high, my energy and topic levels have dipped significantly below where they need to be for a good, fiery, home-town cooked Lizardbreath post.

However, right now, I am feeling a slight increase in afore-mentioned levels, and I'm also feeling vaguely alone since my family has traipsed off to California without me. (Well, 'traipsed' is perhaps the wrong word. But it sure sounds good.) Please, don't feel indignant on my behalf. My grandmother is being interred in California, so they've gone down for the second funeral (the first was this past Monday, which was good & sad & wonderful & tearful, and no, I'm not really going to go into it more than that right now) & the burial, and just to be with family for a few days. I'm sad I'm not going, but with the recent surgery & with the already low number of personnel at work, I didn't quite feel that I should go.

So, I am even now perched on the bed, with my laptop secure on my...well, my lap...and I am currently wondering exactly what I should write about.

I could mention that I've become an Alton Brown groupie. I guess days on end of lying on the couch sipping liquids while watching Food Network has changed the chemical balance of my brain forever. Alas.

Or, I could talk about getting the 'steri-strips' peeled off of my belly by my surgeon and then going home and having the immediate desire to show my incisions to all my family members. But I resisted. (Well, except for that little exhibition for my sister. My oh my. She puts up with a lot from me. I guess I'm lucky.)

Or, I could talk about that Mr. Rogers thing I was going to talk about before, but didn't get a chance to...But that's kind of boring.

Truth is, kids, most of what I could talk about right now would be boring. I have a lot on my mind, and almost nothing at all in my head. Nonsensical? Naturally. But true.

But, I know that, when I do finally come up with a really great and entertaining topic, you'll all be there, ready & eager to read what I've written.

Until then, I'll just be here. With the Food Network. And my laptop. And my incisions. (Happy, happy incisions...)

Thursday, July 13, 2006

The Nature of Life

Hi, guys.

Today is proof that life does not happen the way we expect. I thought that this evening I'd sit down to write a nice long post about Mr. Rogers' Neighborhood and other shows you might find at 4 o'clock in the morning, but I find that my topic has changed. Drastically.

This afternoon, I found out that my grandmother was fading fast, and likely to pass away sometime today. My mom went up to her apartment around 4pm to meet my dad there, and I waited until my little sister got home, and then took my younger sibs up to see her & the rest of the family, and to say our goodbyes.

As the evening progressed, and as we listened to my grandmother's rattled breathing become more & more shallow, everyone in the room, including my dad and two of his siblings, along with many of my grandmother's grand and great-grandchildren became solemn and reverent. It was strange, I think. There were so many people in the room, but everyone was so quiet. We would go half-hours at a time where the only sounds would be occasional sniffing, and the constant sound of my grandmother's labored breathing, which let us know that she was still with us.

I felt helpless and calm, and sad, mostly sad for my dad, his brother, and his sister (my aunt) who could not seem to stop crying. But I also felt that the space had become so sacred, and that is never, never an unhappy feeling. Holiness can be sad, but it isn't unhappy. Isn't that strange? It's sadness & happiness all at the same time.

I'm sorry--my writing is not going to be very good on this post--I'm just trying to get down some thoughts, here.

There was a baby there (my cousin's), and it was so strange to see the juxtaposition of a woman at the end of a very long life, and an infant less than 4 months old just at the beginning of hers. It was good to have a baby there--that reminder of the constant renewal of life was helpful for everyone in the room, I think. My younger sister is also expecting a baby, and I remember glancing over to her at one point, and another sister (the youngest) had her hand on the other's belly, feeling the baby kick.

My older sister brought her oldest child, my seven-year-old niece, who was very quiet & thoughtful. I was very happy that she was there. My mom had my niece on her lap at one point, and whispered to her, "It's not scary, is it. It's just reverent." (My niece nodded).

My mom was absolutely right. The feeling in the room was reverent. I think it was a mix of respect for my grandmother (who spent her life in the service of God--I've never known any human being as charitable as she was) and a knowledge of & faith in the reality of life after death, and that the arms of a loving Heavenly Father waited for her as she passed over.

My grandmother died this evening at about 11pm, surrounded by three generations of her descendants, and, I believe, my desceased grandfather, and the child they had who had died at a young age.

I'm so grateful that I was able to be there and experience the profound feeling of sacredness in the room. I'm so grateful that all of my siblings who could be there were there--I'm just sad that one of us had to be so far away.

Anyway--again, the writing is poor. It's now early in the morning on the 13th, so I guess I have some excuse. I just feel tired & heavy and sad & relieved. And, glad that I can write that & you guys will all understand.

Thanks. Until next time, then.

Thursday, July 06, 2006

'Twas the Night Before Surgery

Well, my dear friends, tomorrow is the day. At 6am, I'll check myself into my local hospital, fork over $200 for a little down-payment on my deductible, and succumb to anesthesia & The Knife. (Or is it knives? I mean, how many little sharp instruments does a surgeon HAVE??? At least 14, I'll bet. Yeah. 14 sounds good.)

I'm nervous, guys.

I'm now ashamed to admit that I've always been ever-so-slightly scornful of people who are nervous about an upcoming surgery. (I mean--routine surgeries like having your gallbladder removed--not stuff like open heart surgery, or brain surgery, or toe surgery, or other serious stuff like that.) I'm glad that I'm having surgery myself now, so I know what it means to be nervous before going under, even knowing that things will likely be entirely okay. I mean, it's my BODY that they're going to be cutting into, y'know? That place where I live. I'll come awake missing a piece of me.

Plus, I will hurt.

Man, I'm such a baby.

Urgh! And this is so not the tone I intended to have in this post. You see, I've been thinking a bit about having surgery, and about finally being able to sympathize with people going through similar experiences, and I've realized that a lot of what we go through in life is geared to help us understand suffering that other people have to go through. Having this surgery will enable me to grasp, just a little bit what someone with a more serious surgery is going through. I'll be able to offer more sympathy, more real understanding to that person, because I'll have felt it myself, even if to a lesser degree.

I came into this world knowing so little, and I've spent the majority of my life thinking that I knew a great deal. So coming into these life experiences, I'm finally gaining just a small bit of knowledge, but these small bits are teaching me how much of life is still beyond my understanding, and I'm so grateful for that. Now, I hope, I should be a bit slower to make hasty judgements or assesments of people I don't know, and be a little more kind, have a little more empathy.

God teaches us so much through the experiences in our lives. I'm learning so much by living! And I still have so much living to do.

So, until I return a gallbladder-less self, I bid you all a (brief) farewell. And I really do love you, you know (no matter what we've been through in the past and perhaps because of all that we've been through). You're all wonderful.

Well, see you on the other side!

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Holy Schnahoodles! Could it have been Donny?

Okay--as (I believe) pretty much all of you know, I go singing about twice a month to a (semi) local retirement home. In fact, most of you have been part of that singing group at one time or another! (Gosh, I miss those days.)

Well, this evening, I went as usual to my singing appointment, although I had to schedule it for the first rather than the second Sunday due to my imminent surgery. So, it was one of those solo times, where I did kind of a one-woman performance for everybody who would come in the room, sit down & listen to me. Most of the time it goes pretty smoothly, but upon occasion, I mess up on the piano or squeak pretty bad. Thank goodness the residents don't usually mind too much. They're so darn nice to me!

Anyway--to get to my point, about halfway through singing today, I got a bit of a better look at a visitor in the audience. I'd been aware of him the whole time, (I'm usually more comfortable when it's just residents), but I hadn't really gotten a good look at his face. But, as I was asking for requests & having a brief conversation with one of the residents, I glanced over and saw....

Donny Osmond?

Or, it very well could have been someone who just looked like him.

But, it might have been Donny Osmond! Weird. So, I proceeded to keep on singing (with the occasional squeak & rather more than occasional goof on the piano) and tried not to think about the fact that Donny Osmond (or someone who looked like him) was sitting there next to an elderly relative (his dad? grandad?) listening to said squeaks and fumbles.

But, it very well might not have been Donny. In fact, it probably wasn't. Hey, I also though I saw a three-legged horse on the way home! That is, until I got near enough to see that it was standing sturdily on four. Man. And I haven't even started the pain medication yet.

Oh, what I have to look forward to.

P.S. Donny, if you did listen to me sing, thanks for not laughing. I love singing to those residents, and it's something that makes me feel like I'm using my smallish talent in a useful way. I think I enjoy it as much as they do--probably more, in fact. Even with (or without) possible famous persons sitting in on my pitiful performance. *Smiles*

Saturday, July 01, 2006

I needs your help

Okay, y'all. I wanted to keep this a secret, but I'm planning something extraordinary for the 1,000th hit to my blog. (Well, maybe 'extraordinary' is an overstatement, but still...)

AND, I need your help. Please post a comment to this entry to tell me what your two favorite ice cream flavors are. If you don't tell me, I'm going to have to guess, and I could very well get it wrong, which would be a TOTAL tragedy. So post a comment!

That is all.

(Hope your days are going well and all that.)